Cards prepare for first friendly
12:51pm, Thu 11th Jul 2013
Staines Town v Woking
3pm on Saturday 13 July 2013
The Cards begin their pre-season programme with a trip to Staines Town this Saturday. At the time of writing Garry Hill has got 13 players on contract for the coming season, so he will presumably see pre-season games as being partly an opportunity to look at players on trial as well as developing fitness and team work.
With 12 of the existing squad returning from last season (midfielder Josh Payne being the only new signing so far), Garry has an excellent foundation for this campaign, with a number of younger players no doubt having benefited hugely from their experience of their first Conference Premier season. However, with only one recognised forward on the books, Gez Sole, who will be playing competitive football for the first time since his cruciate ligament injury last August, there is an obvious need to add goalscoring prowess to the squad. If last season is anything to go by â€“ when loan players Bradley Bubb, Jayden Stockley and Billy Knott contributed the lionâ€™s share of goals â€“ the likelihood is that Garry will once again be looking to bring in one or two young League players on long-term loan. But Bubb definitely wonâ€™t be returning, having signed for Belgian club Royal Antwerp. A back-up goalkeeper appears to be needed too.
The Swans just escaped relegation from the Conference South last season, finishing in 18th place. Manager Marcus Gayle has brought in Huw Johnson, one of his protÃ©gÃ©s in the Donsâ€™ reserve side which he used to manage: Johnson is described as a 6â€™ goalscoring midfielder. Returnees include ex-Don striker Louie Theophanous (who had a spell at Bromley too), left back Jordaan Brown, Max Worsfold , Jerel Ifil, Louis Rae Beadle, Troy Ferguson, Lewis Ferrell, Dan Brown, Ashley Lodge and Kyle Merson, a young keeper who is expected to challenge Jack Turner (another ex-Don) for the number one jersey.
Staines returned to training on 4 July and, like Woking, this game will be their first outing.
From Woking go over junction 11 of the M25 into Chertsey, turn left onto Chertsey Road at the roundabout, then straight onto the B387 / Fordwater Road. At the end of this road turn right onto the B375 / Bridge Road. After a mile take 1st exit at roundabout onto Littleton Lane. At next roundabout take 1st exit onto B376 / Shepperton Road, then turn right onto the B376 / The Broadway, followed by the next left onto Staines Road. After 1 mile turn left onto Wheatsheaf Lane, and the ground will be on your right.
Nearest station: Staines
The journey there involves changes at Weybridge or changes at Weybridge and Virginia Water. With changes, the 13.03 from Woking should get you to Staines at 14.02, whilst the 13.33 should get you there at 14.28.
On the way back there are trains at 14 and 44 minutes past the hour direct to Weybridge, with a 20 minute wait for a train to Woking.
The ground is a 15 minute walk from the train station. Type the postcode into www.streetmap.co.uk to see possible routes.
REMAINING FRIENDLY GAMES
The Cardsâ€™ remaining friendly games are as follows:
Tuesday 16 July: Dover Athletic v Woking (k.o. 7.45pm)
Saturday 20 July: Woking v AFC Bournemouth (k.o. 3pm)
Saturday 27 July: Woking v Gillingham (k.o. 3pm)
Tuesday 30 July: Eastleigh v Woking (k.o. 7.30pm)
Saturday 3 August: Woking v QPR XI (k.o. 3pm)
The Cards start their league campaign on Saturday 10 August at home to Lincoln City.
Come on, you Cards!