CHRIS Cornes admitted he is still trying to figure out the best formation for his Worcester City side after watching the 2-1 pre-season defeat to Malvern Town.

City conceded a last-minute goal as The Hillsiders, who will be playing a level above their local rivals for the first time ever this season, pinched victory from what was a fair draw according to Cornes.

"I thought a draw was probably a fair result so to concede a late goal like that and lose the game is frustrating," said Cornes.

Matt Turner has fired Malvern into an early lead after a mix-up in the City box but captain for the day Calvin Dinsley headed Worcester level 10 minutes after the break.

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City looked the better side in the second-half but went down to 10 men due to injuries in the final stages and the visitors took advantage with virtually the last kick as Jedidiah Afenyo tapped into an empty net.

But Cornes was keen to insist that pre-season is not all about results.

"I have been involved in pre-season games where you play really well and win seven or eight of your games and then start the league campaign with a run of defeats and others where you lose the majority of those games and go on to start like a house on fire in the league," he added.

"So ultimately, the result is irrelevant but I would be lying if I said i didn't want to win the game.

"We played well in the second-half and I thought we controlled the game but when we went down to 10 men (due to injuries) they were able to capitalise and that's football."

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Worcester won their opening two games of the summer, scoring five goals against both New Dales Vale and Bewdley. But Malvern was always going to be a step up in challenge and the new-look City side proved that there is still much to do ahead of the season kick-off in the FA Cup on August 5.

"We have a run of games now to keep getting the players up to speed and trying to implement the style of football we want to play and I think we are starting to see that now after three games," he said.

"But it's also about finding the formation that fits. We have the individuals and the style of play but we need to also figure out a formation that suits and that can take time. 

"But these lads we have brought in, a lot of them are former captains and players with lots of non-league experience so I am not concerned about the team gelling, but that is what pre-season is all about, building up to the first game of the season.

"We have some nights out planned and a weekend away so we will be using that as well to help with those things off the pitch, but that's not a concern with this bunch."

City continue their pre-season campaign this weekend when they welcome Step 3 Telford United to Claines Lane (3PM kick-off).