Wilson’s delighted - despite defeat
Kevin Wilson today expressed himself “delighted” at the way pre-season has gone so far for Ilkeston FC.
The Robins lost 2-0 last night against an impressive Port Vale side in the last of their friendly matches against League opposition and the manager viewed it as another excellent training session.
He said: “I’m really delighted at the way things have gone for us so far. In the main we have managed to avoid injuries - which is important - and fitness levels have steadily improved. I also think we have given a very good account of ourselves against Sheffield United, Notts County, Burton Albion and Port Vale.”
He added: “It’s important that we play matches against League opposition in pre-season because we need to generate some revenue after three months without any money coming in.
“On top of that, it’s a good thing for our young players to pit themselves against professionals. It gives them an insight into the standards they must strive for and for Darren Caskey and me, it tells us a lot about how individuals match up to the challenge.
“Now that we have finished with the pro clubs, the emphasis changes for us. We’re back to our bread and butter now... three tough away games to sharpen us up for the Premier Division campaign.
“When the lads turn up for training tomorrow, we will get down to working on our shape and that will be our main area of concentration over the next couple of weeks. We know how we want to play next season and although we probably won’t reveal our hand in the remaining pre-season games, that will take priority in training.”
An own goal handed Port Vale the lead midway through the first half and victory was clinched by Micky Adams’ men with 15 minutes remaining.
Added Wilson: “I was impressed with Port Vale. They played really well and if they carry on like that, I would expect them to be there or thereabouts in the promotion stakes.
“Although we stayed in the game for 75 minutes, I cannot honestly say that we looked like winning it. But we all have to remember where they are in the pyramid - and where we are.”
Next up for the Robins is a trip on Saturday to meet Sheffield FC - their semi-final opponents in the Promotion Play-offs in April. The game will now kick-off at 3pm, not 2pm as previously advertised.