City make mark at Stratford

ON TRIAL: Midfielder Connor Gater (right) is hoping to win a deal at Worcester City.

ON TRIAL: Midfielder Connor Gater (right) is hoping to win a deal at Worcester City.

First published in Sport
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Worcester News: Photograph of the Author by

CONNOR Gudger and Danny Jackman gave a glimpse of what the new season might hold for Worcester City in a 2-0 warm-up victory at Stratford Town.

The pair, now signed up for the 2014-15 campaign, featured against the Southern League Division One South and West hosts as City won for the first time in pre-season.

Gudger was the more advanced down Worcester’s left but former Kidderminster Harriers player Jackman was equally keen to push forward from left-back.

It was former Tamworth player Gudger who put the visitors ahead inside four minutes latching on to a pass from trialist Dave McDermott down the left and sliding a left-foot shot past Andy Kemp.

Captain Ellis Deeney, a late replacement for ex-Nuneaton trialist midfielder Phil Trainer (blisters), doubled the lead 11 minutes into the second-half with a deft chip over Kemp after more good work from McDermott.

In between, a fierce thunderstorm left standing water on the pitch, making fluid football difficult.

Gudger and Jackman will allow for versatility in a team not blessed with the resources of some of their rivals.

Based on Saturday’s team-sheet, Jackman’s presence at left-back saw Tyler Weir, who can play on either side of the defence, moved to the right.

That is normally a position occupied by player-of-the-year George Williams, and he did play there in the second-half, but City deployed Williams in the centre of midfield at the end of last term and are keen to use him there more.

Former England schoolboy trialist Connor Gater joined Deeney in the midfield but he could find himself taken on as squad player, making way for Williams to move forward.

City again used their flexible 4-5-1 system with striker Mike Symons as the focal point and Gudger and trialists McDermott and Rob Purdie interlinking behind him.

Jacob Rowe partnered Way-ne Thomas at centre-half and if he can recapture the form of his last season with City, will provide strength in depth.

A late Thomas error gave Stratford their best chance but Joe Halsall fired wide.

Heeley said: “Results are not the important thing but we kept a clean sheet and scored two goals. I thought Stratford were a good outfit, well organised and I would imagine they’ll do well. The pitch played very well considering how much rain we had.”

City: Veiga (Vaughan HT), Weir (Williams 60), Jackman, Rowe (Hutchison HT), Thomas, Gater, McDermott, Deeney, Symons (Moore 56), Purdie, Gudger.

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