Preview of Yate's new season in Southern League Division One South & West
A NEW-LOOK Yate Town side will take to the field at Lodge Road when they face Wimborne Town in their Southern League Division One South & West opener on Saturday (3pm).
Goalkeeper Martin Horsell, defenders Jacob Staines and Joe Chandler, utility players Nuno Felix and Shaun Wimble, midfielders Martin Lenihan and Lewis Shipp and striker Jake Jackson have all agreed terms in the last week, joining nine other summer signings.
Only Josh Dempsey, Lubos Ancin, Tom Seery, Jake Cox, Karim Rendall and new captain Mike Bryant remain from last season’s squad, along with player-manager Rob Cousins and assistant Michael Meaker.
Midfielders James Harmer and Mark Badman returned to the club but, along with striker Karim Rendall and goalkeeper Lubos Ancin, have not been able to commit to training during pre-season and their futures appear up in the air.
Horsell, who has had experience of playing in the Football League with Torquay United and had a spell at Yate in the 2007-08 season, looks set to provide competition for last year’s number one Dempsey.
Cousins has used his contacts at former club Bath City to lure Staines, Lenihan and Shipp, who all played for the Conference club’s under-21 side last year, while right back Chandler arrives from Cadbury Heath and striker Jackson has made the move from Bristol Academy.
Felix has joined from Bridgwater Town and will provide options at left back and midfield, as will experienced Southern League campaigner Wimble, who played for Abingdon United last season.
Yate finalised their preparations for the new season with an impressive 3-1 win over a lively Swansea City under-21 side on Saturday.
A very entertaining friendly match provided good entertainment for the supporters, who were encouraged by the performance of our new-look team.
Swansea opened brightly but Yate soon came to terms with their flowing style and almost took the lead when Ross Staley’s inswinging corner hit the bar.
The home side opened the scoring with a well executed goal on 18 minutes. Brad Abraham sent Lewis Haldane down the left, and he outpaced his covering defender before crossing to Ricky Hulbert, who sent a well controlled volley into the gaping net.
Yate increased the lead on the half-hour mark when Abraham again won the ball in midfield, and released Hulbert, who crossed for Haldane to score easily.
Swansea pulled one back on the stroke of half time with a headed goal. Both sides made several substitutions after the break, and Yate scored their third goal ten minutes after the interval when good work from Bryant gave Jackson the chance to swivel and curl a shot into the net.
- Yate visit Taunton Town next Tuesday (7.45pm).
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