Lydney Town manager 'chomping at the bit' for new season

By Liam Ryder in Football

LYDNEY Town boss Mark Lee says he and his team were ’chomping at the bit’ ahead of the new Hellenic League season.

Lee’s men welcomed Highworth Town last night in the Hellenic Premier Division’s opening fixture, with an FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round tie against Wantage Town coming up on Saturday.

He admitted that pre-season had been ’difficult’ for his men, with a number of injuries and players unavailable, and couldn’t wait for last night’s match up.

“If you ask any manager, pre-season is always about getting minutes in for players and having people available,” he said.

“But we haven’t managed to do a lot of that so for I’m glad it’s over.

“After that you’re chomping at the bit for three points and for a game to mean something so it’s great to get going.”

Lydney finished ninth last season, and Lee is targeting an improved finish but quelled talk of a fight for promotion.

“For me it’s just about year-on-year improvement,” he said.

“People talk about promotion and things like that but I never like to come out and say we’re going to do this or that.”

Lee has brought in a number of new faces, including Dan Morgan, who returns from Undy.

Centre-half Dan Barnard comes in from Swansea University, while Ross Gabriel has signed from fellow Foresters and County League side Broadwell but is injured.

Ben Hands has been dual registered with Cinderford Town, while youngsters Keelan Hamlett and Frankie Johnson have been given one-year contracts and have become the first players in Lydney’s history to be signed to a contract.

“We always like to bring players through, and they surprised us by making the step up,” Lee said.

“They’ve done really well. They came through from the Under-16s and will play for the Under-18s in the Midland Floodlit League but they’re in the first team squad.”

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