Tomorrow evening Darlaston Town play their third pre-season friendly, bringing them half-way through the programme before the league season starts on 3rd August 2019.
The Club travels for the first time this pre-season, a short distance to West Walsall E-ACT Academy to play near neighbours and local rivals Willenhall Town.
Willenhall Town under the guidance of Matt Fisher haven’t really haven’t had a break at all from football, starting their pre-season training back in May.
The Willenhall squad have already played 3 or 4 pre-season friendlies, the last two Saturdays taking on fellow Premier Division clubs Wolves Sporting and Bilston Town. Last Season Willenhall finished in 16th place in Division One and this will Season will start with a very much changed squad having lost the central defensive partnership as well as a promising young forward who has moved onto another Division One West Midlands Regional League Club. As always at this time of year managers are looking at building squads for the forthcoming season bringing in new players, playing new systems and we dont expect anything different tomorrow.
Manager Parkes was delighted after Saturday’s fight back in the second half against Total Motion Midland League Premier Division team Lye Town after being 3-0 down at half-time, in a mistake riddled first half, totally dominated by the visitors, but thanks to some tactical and personnel changes, Darlaston managed to level the score with 10 minutes remaining. Goals in the second half were from Noah Diallo following a mistake and miscommunication between the defence and the keeper, allowing Diallo to slot into an empty net. Second goal was a screamer of a penalty smashed by Isaac Cooper, after T.J. Davis had been upended in the Lye penalty area giving referee Lewis Mountain no choice but to award a spot kick to Darlaston. Isaac Cooper gave the keeper no chance smashing the ball into corner the net. Thirdly and lastly, a good finish from T.J. Davis scoring his first goal for the club with a cross-shot across the keeper after good work on the left by Noah Diallo.
Manager Parkes said following the game “I was really pleased with the attitude, fitness and willingness to listen by the players, especially at half-time and during the second half and we gave a much better account of ourselves. However, I was not happy and would not accept the quality and level of performance that the squad provided in the first half of the game, it was unacceptable”
“Our first two games of pre-season have been exceptionally tough tests against higher league opposition, which is I feel always the way forward to try and test yourself as much and as often as possible. Tomorrow evening you are likely to see a very different squad and team take to the grass against Willenhall Town, as it will give opportunities to other players because we are carefully monitoring the amount of time each player spends on the pitch. It is part of our pre-season programme in ensuring that the players reach peak fitness at the start of the league season on 3rd August”
Whilst Manager Parkes mentions the start of the Season, we have been advised by the League that the fixtures are likely to be published within the next 10-14 days. The delay has been caused by the late release by the F.A. of the F.A. Trophy and F.A. Cup Fixtures which were published last Friday.
As soon as the fixtures are known we will of course put them on the website and as soon as we are notified, we will make them available to you.
We hope to see you tomorrow night at West Walsall E-act Academy, Primley Avenue, Walsall, WS2 9UA.
Kick-off is 7.15 p.m.