Rovers U18s manager Chad Gribble has praised his team’s first performance of pre-season, but insists there’s still work to do following a 3-3 draw against Oldham Athletic at Cantley Park.
The hosts went ahead on three separate occasions through Jack Goodman, Charlie Thompson and Max Adamson but were forced to share the spoils after the Latics managed to respond with goals of their own each time.
It was the first time that Gribble took charge of the U18s since his appointment earlier this summer and he paid credit to his players’ conditioning upon their return to the squad.
He said: “It’s been a good start to pre-season in general. The players have come back in a good place and there’s a good level of fitness and physicality to them at the moment.
“We’ve not had long to put any tactical work into the players so the Oldham game was really about getting a certain amount of minutes into bodies.
"We’ve done that and we’ve come through unscathed, there have been no injuries and that’s always something you worry about in that first preseason game so that’s good.”
With a number of second-year scholars linking up with the first-team at Nuneaton Borough, Rovers introduced a number of U16 players in the second period and Gribble thought the young side used their opportunity to good effect.
He added: “We’ve been able to offer an invaluable 30 minutes to our U16s group in the middle part of the game and I thought they competed fantastically well and they’ve done no work with us at all, so there are lots of positives to take out of the game but as always with these initial preseason games, there’s still a lot of work to do.”
Gribble’s side will now aim to build on their opening to preseason as they turn their attentions to a game against neighbours Sheffield United at Cantley Park on Saturday, July 16.