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Simon Austin

Austin on developing a new squad

Maidstone United’s Development Squad continue their preparations for the new season, with a friendly away to Tunbridge Wells U21s on Thursday evening (25 July).

It’s the second outing for Simon Austin and Kane Rice’s new side, who drew 2-2 against Broadbridge Heath on Saturday.

Speaking about that opening friendly, Austin said: “I was really pleased for 70 minutes of that game. I thought we dominated possession and thoroughly deserved to be 2-0 up, with two well taken goals.

“Our defensive shape was good, we were patient with the ball in building up play, and movement around the ball was good.

“We run out of steam in the last 20 minutes and although conceding goals is always disappointing, this was to be expected as we’ve only had one training session on the Thursday, following the two trial games.

Broadbridge are an established and experienced Step 6 team, so to conduct ourselves in the way we did for most of the game was very pleasing. We included 15, 16 and 17-year-olds in the squad, which is what we want to be about.

“We’re not looking for a massive squad as we want to work with the youth section to promote players into our set-up and there’ll be times when first team players will need minutes. Our core squad is starting to come together though.

“It was good to see a few supporters at the game on Saturday. We are looking forward to our second pre-season game away at Tunbridge Wells on Thursday and anyone who can make it will be most welcome.”

  • The Development Squad are looking for an away friendly on Saturday 27 July. Any interested clubs are asked to phone 01622 753817.