Romford manager Martin is relishing pre-season end as problems continue to mount
PUBLISHED: 10:24 03 August 2019 | UPDATED: 10:25 03 August 2019
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Romford will complete their pre-season campaign against Faversham Town on Saturday - and manager Paul Martin cannot wait for it all to be over.
Boro got the better of Barkingside in midweek, with Giovanni Palmer and Billy Stewart on target in a 2-0 win at Ford Sports & Social Club Newbury Park.
Martin fielded two different sides in each half, after their friendly at FC Clacton had fallen victim to the heavy downpours that affected most of Essex on Saturday.
And he admitted it had been a frustrating build-up to the 2019/20 Bet Victor Isthmian League North season - following their reprieve from relegation - with the main action not getting underway until August 17.
"Pre-season is pre-season, it's frustrating," said Martin.
"With our game being called off on Saturday, I had to put one lot out in the first half and the other lot in the second half. And our injury list is getting longer.
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"We've had a broken leg at East Thurrock, a dislocated shoulder and two knee ligaments, who are going to be out for a while.
"It has been hard this year. The reprieve took longer than we thought and with us moving to Brentwood to groundshare and them getting a new manager, we've done well to get the games we have done."
Martin was faced with another rebuilding job this summer, with only a handful of players remaining from last season's squad. But he hopes to have all of his pieces in place for the first league match against Canvey.
"We had six or seven players come back from last year's 24 and you try and bring new faces in and get them to click together," he said. "But we've released a lot who were not up to the expected standard.
"Back in the day I couldn't wait for pre-season, but nowadays you've got players with kids who can only get away during the school holidays. It is what it is. It's been enjoyable!
"We're going to start the season with three key players away on holiday and we're probably three or four players short still, but hopefully we will get them in and away we'll go.
"We'll go to Faversham and then on August 10 we've got no game, so we're going to have a bit of a fun day, play some cricket and have a barbeque and a bit of banter."