Kevin Wilson has finalised Ilkeston FC’s line-up of pre-season matches - and it’s packed with attractive local derby clashes.
Notts County kick things off with a visit to the New Manor Ground on Saturday July 2 (1pm) and will be followed by Lincoln City on Saturday, July 16 (3pm), newly-promoted Alfreton Town on Saturday July 23 (3pm) and Mansfield Town on Wednesday, August 3 (7.45pm).
The final home game before the Robins begin life in the Evo-Stik First Division South will be against Mickleover Sports of the Evo-Stik Premier on Saturday, August 6 (3pm) in a match that’s sure to provide Wilson with an excellent guide to progress.
The away fixtures for Ilkeston FC will be against Arnold Town on Tuesday, July 19 (7.45pm), Dunkirk on Tuesday, July 26 (7.45), and Shepshed Dynamo on Saturday, July 30 (3pm).
Wilson said: ”We lost the Eastwood Town fixture after Paul Cox resigned and it would have been nice to include that on the list.
“Even so, I’m happy with the line-up of matches. It’s a good balance against teams from higher divisions who will give us a severe test, and others from slightly lower levels.
“I’m sure they will be competitive games because of the local derby element, but to be honest, the results will be of very little consequence.
“The key thing - especially as we will be a new team - will be to get the players ‘bedded in’ and develop our pattern of play.”
l The constitution of the Evo-Stik Division One South will be finalised at the league’s AGM on Thursday, June 16.
Issues surrounding clubs at other levels could still result in changes being made to the provisional list of clubs, though Ilkeston FC’s placing is not thought to be under threat.
The current list of teams is: Bedworth United (moved from Southern League), Belper Town, Brigg Town, Carlton Town, Coalville Town (promoted from Midland Football Alliance), Goole, Grantham Town, Hucknall Town (relegated from Evo-Stik Premier), Ilkeston FC, Kidsgrove Athletic, Leek Town, Lincoln United, Loughborough Dynamo, Market Drayton Town, Newcastle Town, Quorn, Rainworth MW, Romulus, Rugby Town (moved from Southern League), Sheffield FC, Stamford, Sutton Coldfield Town.
The fixtures for the Evo-Stik League will be announced on Wednesday, July 13, with the opening fixtures scheduled for Saturday, August 13.