Flitcroft hoping squad survived sun-baked Retford friendly

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Stags manager David Flitcroft thanked Retford United for their efforts in staging Saturday’s pre-season friendly and kept his fingers crossed that none of his side had picked up injury on a sun-ravaged Cannon Park pitch.

“All my players put in the shift I’d expect,” he said after an emphatic 5-0 victory.

“Looking visibly at players like Omari (Sterling-James), Lee Angol, Jordan Graham, Calum Butcher, Will Atkinson and Bish (Neil Bishop), it looked like we covered a lot of ground on a big pitch with a good intensity - certainly in the second half and the back end of the first half.

“With the weather we have had over the last six weeks, I was obviously concerned with the pitch as it was scorched and burnt. “But they have done the best job possible with it and hopefully we haven’t got any injuries as that’s the biggest thing in pre-season - you design a pre-season to get everyone through. We’re hoping we have a full body count on Monday to train.

On the game itself, he added: “We were a little bit wasteful.

“Omari has put some good quality in, especially in the first half from corners. We’ve not hit the target a couple of times and spurned quite a few chances.

“I enjoyed certain aspects and the passing phases that we’ve been trying to work on. The lads have definitely put in a shift.

“Retford United were fantastic with us. We’ve been looked after and they’ve been so accommodating.

“It’s a nice feel and a lovely vibe to this football club. A massive thank you to Retford for their welcome and for staging the game.”