Wilson happy after opener

KEVIN Wilson declared his satisfaction at Ilkeston FC’s performance after the club’s first ever match ended in a 2-2 draw with Notts County.

The match was one of the first pre-season games to be played anywhere in the country, with both Robins and County players having only been back in training for a very short time.

But Wilson says there was plenty to encourage those present as they witnessed some of the Robins’ new players for the first time, whilst at the same time urging caution.

He said: ““We can take a lot of positives from the performance.

“But it’s very early days and people really must not get too carried away. It was a commendable effort against a League club and there were some encouraging displays - but that’s all.

“We haven’t yet done any work in training on organisation and shape.

“All we have done is build up the players’ fitness and play some keep-ball.

“It’s very much work in progress. Everything we do over the next few weeks will be geared towards making sure that we’re ready for the first League game on August 13.”

Signings

Among those taking part on Saturday were five new signings brought in by the club in the days leading up to the game.

Midfielder Liam Green returns having been part of the Ilkeston Town team when the club was liquidated last year, and he was joined by winger Will McCall, a 19-year-old who lists Manchester City and Oldham Athletic as his previous clubs and is now studying for a Sports Science & Management course at Loughborough University.

McCall told the club’s website: “I still have ambitions to break into League football and believe that Ilkeston can give me the chance to do that.

Goalkeeper Aaron Butcher has signed from Boston United and will also act as goalkeeping coach to the club’s academy, while striker Daryl Thomas, a scorer against Notts County, has signed after being a regular with Carlton Town last year.

Completing the quintet was centre-half Joe Maguire, who Wilson previously signed last summer from Scunthorpe United but who was another left a free agent by Ilkeston Town’s demise.

Wilson said: “Joe is a strong player with good ability and if he commits himself to the task in hand, I think there’s a lot of scope for improvement.

“He can also do a job in defence as well as the centre of midfield and his versatility can be an asset to us.”

The Evo-Stik League fixtures will be released on July 13 - see next week’s Advertiser for the full list.