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Big squad but few games brings dilemma for Benson
Andover Town boss Neil Benson is mindful of the size of his squad and the fact that the SW Counties, Conference Alliance and various college leagues are all still yet to get going and, as such, is doing a juggling act.
“I watched Hythe and Dibden play up at Tadley and with due respect to them I believed we had enough in the locker to beat them and so made a few changes from the New Milton game” he told the Advertiser.
“I want to give everyone game time but with no midweek games for us and the other leagues yet to get going it is awkward.”
That being the case Benson is putting out a request to any Wyvern League clubs or reserve teams who have floodlights and who would like a friendly during the next month or so.
“It is going to be a long season but it is important to show what we are about” he added.
Saturday’s match was all over by half-time and Benson had it down as a ‘good start’ with Ollie Yates as his man of the match. “His workrate and overall play was excellent and if we can get him fully fit and firing he will be a big asset to our club”.
“We have three wide players in our squad who would walk into any Wessex League side in Gunner (Yates), Cameron Hough and Claudio Herbert and with Lewis (Benson) running at the defence on Saturday he took a hammering as they just couldn’t stop him and it was done and dusted by half-time.”
The visitors, managed by former Lion Lee Burch, ended the game with a handful in the book while Town had none but Benson added “there was nothing sinister.”
At half-time he asked the players to keep their discipline and a clean sheet, which they did, although missed chances meant they did not add to the first half strikes from Yates, Foot and Dixon.
“As the season progresses we will be sharper and there will be goals.”
Looking to Saturday’s game at Team Solent Benson was very complimentary.
“I have the highest regard for their football and they will be a well organised team and it will be the most difficult game we have had since we formed.”
There may be a new face in the squad at Team Solent as they have added the not inconsiderable name of Leighton Speechley-Price, who is a 19-year old 6’5’’ striker who was on the books at Salisbury City and Sholing before playing Wessex League football for Fawley and Cowes Sports among others.
He is also listed as being a more than useful athlete for the Bournemouth AC and his pace will be an asset.