Alfreton Town assistant manager Russ O’Neill thinks the Reds have more squad strength this time around as they begin pre-season games.
Looking ahead to Barnsley, Leeds United and Notts County visiting the Impact Arena in the next week, O’Neill commented: “I think we are a lot stronger now than we were this time last year.
“The spine of the side looks a lot stronger and we will be a lot better off for having the likes of Darran Kempson and Adam Quinn on board from the start of the campaign. They can be very big players for us again.”
The club have played two behind-closed-doors pre-season games with a 2-1 win at Staveley MW on Saturday being followed up by a 3-3 draw at Sheffield FC on Tuesday evening.
The games were used primarily to cast an eye over numerous hopefuls.
All the Reds goals came from trialists and O’Neill says that some of them will now be added to the first team squad for tougher tests which lie ahead of the new season.
O’Neill added: “ We will now be bringing three or four of the trialists into the first team group, getting them training every day and getting them involved in the pre-season games.
“It is a big step up for most of them, but you never know. If we can get one or two out of them, we will have done well. “
Meanwhile, Reds boss
Nicky Law has received a welcome boost ahead of the 2012/13 campaign with the news that striker Nathan Arnold has committed himself to the Reds for a third season by penning a new one-year contract.
Alfreton have a first home pre-season fixture next Tuesday (July 17) when one of Nicky Law’s former clubs, Championship side Barnsley AFC, visit the Impact Arena. Kick-off is 7.45pm.
The Yorkshire club are celebrating their 125th anniversary having been founded in 1887 and the visit to Alfreton will be the Tykes’ first game of their anniversary season. Barnsley manager Keith Hill is expected to bring a strong side for the game.
The following Saturday (July 21) sees another Championship club visiting, with Leeds United at the Impact Arena and again, the whites have promised some first team players will be involved in the game. Kick-off is 3pm.
Another attractive home game follows on Wednesday, July 25, when League One neighbours Notts County are the visitors for a game which kicks-off at the slightly earlier time of 7.30pm.
Admission to all Alfreton pre-season home games is pay at the gate on the day and the prices are £8 for adults and £4 concessions - over-65’s and under-16 year-olds.
Segregation will not be in place for the Barnsley game and the club anticipate that it will not be utilised in any of the pre-season home games.
Season tickets up The club are delighted to report that despite an increase in prices this year, season ticket sales are up five per cent on numbers sold at the corresponding time of year in 2011.
Supporters are reminded that there is now just one month in which to purchase a season ticket, the deadline for obtain a season ticket is Friday, August 10. Prices are now Adults (persons aged 16 and over) £310, Concessions (senior citizens, aged 65 and over and children aged 15 and under) £206; Ten Match Tickets Adult £160, Concessions £110. Season tickets can be ordered by contacting Lisa Towerzey on 01159 392090 extension 107 between 9am and 3pm Monday to Friday.