Both the First Team and the Shadow Squad joined South West Regional Team for a training day at the superb facilities provided by Gloucester University.
After several drills and tactical discussions all games were split into 20 mins each way.
The shadow squad were missing a couple of players due to injury and holidays so Andy Scrace (Leeds Titans) and Martyn Walker (Boston United) came into the squad. Their first game against South West went impressively as a brace from Andy Scrace and one from Skipper Dave Scotney saw them through to a comfortable 3-0 win.
England’s first team were attempting new systems and ideas as their game against the South West finished a much closer 3-2 win, goals in the first half from Mike Milligan, Ian Ward and Neil Evans. The South West regional side were very well organised by Lach Geddes and proved dangerous and a handful for both defences, and an ideal test for the England sides.
The final fixture saw the two England sides play a very competitive game, only a second half snapshot from Stamford’s Paul Kirby separating the sides. Some superb goal keeping and quality defending making it very difficult to break each side down.
The whole day seemed a massive success and great preparation for the forthcoming Euros against Italy and Wales in Chesterfield.
Assistant Manager Dave Castle commented,
“We’ve had a really productive day today, tried new systems and different plays some of which worked and others that didn’t work so well. The shadow squad were pretty impressive, and the South West were great competition for us. We will go with a squad of 10 to Chesterfield so we have a really difficult choice to make this week after some brilliant individual performances “