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Scott Lindsey “We head to Harrogate confident and injury free”

Town boss has a fully fit squad heading into League Two opener…

28 July 2022

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Swindon Town face Harrogate Town this weekend as the new 2022/23 EFL Sky Bet League Two season gets underway.

Our visit to the EviroVent Stadium will be the first competitive game for recently-appointed First-Team Head Coach, Scott Lindsey, and the new man in the hotseat at SN1 has a full squad to choose from as he looks to grab three points in North Yorkshire.

Addressing the media in his pre-match press conference at The County Ground, Lindsey admitted both he and his players are really looking forward to getting the season started, and his only selection headaches will be around who starts, rather than players missing through injury.

“We head into the Harrogate game at full strength which is a huge plus for us,” he said.

“It’s quite unusual you start a new campaign with no knocks to players or muscles tweaks here and there as they’re quite common, so we’re absolutely delighted with that, and it shows how well the players look after themselves.

“I’ve said throughout pre-season the lads have put a real shift in over the past four to five weeks with long distances covered, but we’ve stuck to our plan and I’m really looking forward to seeing the players out there performing.

Scott on the opposition…

“Harrogate are a strong side with good players. They’re very compact defensively and have the ability to spring into fast counter attacks, so we need to find spaces to play in ourselves and defend well.

“They have a good core of players in their squad too with the likes of Luke Armstrong, Jack Muldoon and Alex Pattison – players who can really open you up and threaten, so we need to be on our guard and of course, be a threat ourselves and ensure we get back into our defensive positions when needed.

“It’s a game we are looking forward to. You can feel the energy in the squad at the moment and the players are bubbly and bright. They’ll be the same tomorrow and we’ll train before setting off, and come 3pm tomorrow they’ll be buzzing again.

“There’s always a fair bit of pressure to win your opening game of the league season, but we don’t put unnecessary pressures on ourselves. If we play the way we have prepared we’ll have every chance of putting in a good performance and winning the game.”

Taking charge of his first league game…

“I’m really looking forward to it. I’ve said before that I’ve done my apprenticeship.

“I’ve been a professional first team and youth coach for many years as well as an assistant, so I feel I’m more than equipped to take the role.

“This is a club very close to my heart and it’s a great honour to lead them. We’ve signed a fair few players and I feel we have a squad of talented lads capable of playing good football and achieving great things, and we’ll be pushing all the way.”

Scott on his squad selection…

“In any leadership role you have to make tough decisions, and as a football manager it’s part and parcel of the job.

“It’s been really hard picking the team for Saturday as every player deserves to be involved. We have a really good squad with a great midfield and players both in front and behind them. It’s great to have that depth.

“I’ve always said if I ever got into management I’d always be honest with my players, and I have been.

“I’ve seen it in the past when players have been dropped and it hasn’t been communicated well, and vowed I’d never be like that, so I’ve had some difficult conversations today, but my players are top pros.

“They understand the reasons they aren’t starting but the entire squad has a crucial part to play this season. We have a great togetherness and that’s vital.”

The importance of his new signings gelling…

“Of course we’ve signed a fair few players during the off-season, and we’ve worked incredibly hard to ensure every single member of the squad knows their role. They know when to transition, attack and defend. The players have listened and taken it all onboard.

“We’ll be looking to take advantage of the height and physicality in the team, and this is something I was keen to build on from last season.

“We want to score goals, whether it’s via set pieces, throw-ins or corners. Plenty of sides in this division have that and gained a lot of points in games last season, so we’ll be competing and be an attacking threat.”

We’ll have more pre-match reaction tomorrow in the lead-up to the game.

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