McFarlane ready for ‘real’ season

PUBLISHED: 13:13 09 August 2013

Hornchurch manager Jimmy McFarlane (Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Hornchurch manager Jimmy McFarlane (Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League images are subject to DataCo Licencing restrictions

Hornchurch boss happy for Ryman League action

Hornchurch boss Jimmy McFarlane insists the easy work is out of the way and now he can’t wait to get on with the hard work, writes Colin Munford.

McFarlane saw his side draw their final pre-season friendly 3-3 against Aveley on Monday night and is quite clearly happy to see the back of the warm-up campaign.

“I hate pre-season. I did as a player and I do as a manager,” said McFarlane.

“It is necessary, but I don’t read anything into pre-season friendlies.

“I have said right from the off, the first game of pre-season, that I couldn’t care less about the result, I am more interested in form and fitness.”

With the many hours of fitness work now out of the way, the Urchins get their Ryman Premier Division season underway with a home match against Lewes at Bridge Avenue tomorrow (Saturday).

And McFarlane is the first one to admit it has been an unusual pre-season compared to others, having had to deal with the unknown of what league they would be playing in.

Having been relegated from Conference South last season, Urchins were left hoping for a reprieve for quite some time, with others clubs in financial trouble.

But a place in the Ryman League was eventually confirmed at the AGM and McFarlane added: “The easy work is done, the hard work starts on Saturday.

“It’s a hard job as manager in pre-season unless you have got millions of friendlies. We were a little bit behind with our preparation because we didn’t know what league we would be in, so we had to arrange friendlies all over the place.

“You’ve got to get players who you know will be in the team fit and you have to look at triallists as well.”

McFarlane used the final pre-season friendly at Mill Field to look over those triallists who had featured too heavily over the summer and one in particular, Ade Yusuff, has impressed enough to earn a deal with the Urchins.

“Ade Yuisuff will be in our squad for Saturday,” added McFarlane.

“There are a couple of lads there that need to get fit and I am going to offer them that opportunity, but they aren’t ready to play Ryman Premier football yet.

“That game on Monday was to look at eight or nine triallists who have been with me all summer and I haven’t had the chance and I gave them that chance. I learnt more (from the game at Aveley) than from all the other pre-season games.”

The Urchins chief did have a starting XI in mind for tomorrow, but admitted his mind had been changed.

But it wasn’t necessarily a player who had featured in the pre-season fixture with the Millers.

“My team was in my head before tonight and someone has become available that would make it stronger so my team has changed,” he added.

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