United goalkeeper Sam Slocombe is more than happy with how pre-season has gone so far as they await more fixtures this evening.Despite that, the Iron skipper expects that many of the players who featured in Saturday’s 1-0 victory over Championship side Huddersfield Town will not feature in either game – only the professionals who are lacking 90 consecutive minutes.
That said, Wilcox will likely take a relatively strong team to his former club Frickley, while a more youthful side will arrive at West Street, Winterton.
“I believe that quite a strong team will be going to Fricley,” he told The Iron Player.
“I don’t think some of the lads who have played most of the games or who played 90 minutes on Saturday will be involved. It will be more beneficial for them to have their training sessions in the morning. A youngish team will be going to Winterton.”
He added: “I expect Russ himself will want to go to Frickley, but it’s another good opportunity for the lads to get 90 minutes in the legs if they didn’t on Saturday.”
With trio Dave Syers, Deon Burton and David Mirfin all absent from the weekend’s victory, the side will look to err on the side of caution – with only the latter of those confirmed to miss the league’s opener with Swindon Town on August 9.
“We just don’t want any stupid injuries at this point,” he continued.
“There’s still another 90 minutes to play on Saturday (against Leicester City XI at Glanford Park) to get those final match elements right. We are still touching on fitness bits on the training ground, but we are near enough there with our fitness.”
He added: “I feel as though we’re not far enough away for the need to involve another game.”
The club captain kept the team’s first 90 minute clean sheet in their last fixture, with a solid back four performance being played out. With that, Slocombe feels the confidence has remained from last season, with another good pre-season under his belt.
“It’s my second pre-season under Muzzy (Paul Musselwhite) and it has been really enjoyable,” said Slocombe.
“To be honest, we’ve got a great set of lads and pre-season is exactly what it is. It is hard work and you have to get on with it. It has been very varied and that keeps you on your toes.”
He added: “I’ve been a little bit tight from playing Wednesday and Saturday, so I have to have a couple of days of treatment and make sure that it doesn’t become an issue.”
With his back four look set to be unsettled from last season’s latter season constant, Slocombe spoke about trialist Miguel Llera and his contribution to the Huddersfield triumph.
“He almost plays with a cigar in his mouth,” he laughs.
“He’s very relaxed and composed and his experience is fantastic to have out there. He’s been in the Championship but I’m sure he will still have aspirations to play at that level.”
He added: “Three of the four defenders were regulars last season and Miguel came in and didn’t look out of place at all.”
See much more from Sam Slocombe, and others, on The Iron Player.