Ford bemoans ‘most disjointed pre-season at Banbury United’

Banbury United's new manager Mike Ford at Spencer Stadium NNL-150706-111200009
Banbury United's new manager Mike Ford at Spencer Stadium NNL-150706-111200009

Banbury United boss Mike Ford bemoaned a ‘fragmented’ pre-season after his side lost their last warm-up match on Tuesday night.

The Puritans went down 2-0 at Kidlington on a disappointing night and afterwards Ford looked back on a difficult few weeks getting ready for the new campaign.

The Kidlington match might be their final chance to prepare after this weekend’s friendly with Coventry Copsewood was called off with their opponents unable to raise a team – although the club have appealed for new opposition.

And Ford said: “It’s been very fragmented. It’s probably the most disjointed pre-season I’ve been involved in as a manager.

“There have been so many bits that have gone on.

“The training and the preparation/organisation for matches has been great. But there has been so much going on with different needs, injuries, players not available.

“It’s distracted a lot from what we’re trying to do.”

Looking back on the Kidlington game, Ford also felt the hectic schedule of the previous few days took its toll.

The Puritans played Hungerford Town and Swindon Supermarine in games in Saturday and Sunday before taking on their Tuesday night test.

Ford added: “There are probably eight players not here who could start for us on the 11th [against Rushall Olympic in the season’s opener].

“We’ve had it quite tough with a lot of games and I’m probably using players that won’t be here on the 11th.

“That’s not a threat. I’ve just had to get people in to accommodate the number of minutes we’ve played.

“But we still have to put a performance in. I’m a big believer in pre-season results and I would like to think we would come to Kidlington and win.”

Banbury, meanwhile, have confirmed the 18 players who have signed Southern League forms to play for them this year.

They are Jack Harding, Charlie Hawtin, Jamie Heapy, Lee Henderson, Marvin Martin, Jordy Ngathe, Eddie Odihambo, Charlie Wise, Mark Bell, Jack Finch, Lewis Gabbidon, Greg Kaziboni, Jack Self, Amer Awadh, Steve Diggin, Ricky Johnson, Harry Whitehead, Ryan Macdonald.