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15 July 2013

Ward on Hereford and competition for places

Having started their pre-season programme on Friday evening with a game against Bath City, Rovers face Hereford United tomorrow night and Derby County at the Memorial Stadium on Friday.

When he was interviewed at the training ground this morning, manager John Ward said that he hoped to have the same squad available to him for the trip to Edgar Street, with a couple of additions.

“There were no injuries sustained in Friday’s game, so everyone was out training this morning. Mitch Harding and Ellis Harrison also trained and may well be included in the squad.

“All of the younger players will travel with us, as it’s a learning curve for them. We might not do the same as last week, when we gave everyone 45 minutes, as I think we now need to have players getting an hour or 70 minutes.

“Then we face Derby County on Friday night. We have some tough games this week, which is exactly how I wanted it and at the moment everything is looking fair.

“We need now to prepare strongly in preparation for the start of the season and these games are a big help to us as we do that.”

The manager does have competition for places all over the pitch, and says that there is a competitive edge to the training as the season approaches.

“There is good competition, and it’s getting better. We have players coming back from injury, such as Garry Kenneth and Matt Gill and that will improve and increase the competitiveness which is exactly what we want.

“I don’t want people expecting to play, as they have to earn a place in this team. It’s very young and has a lot of inexperience as well so we need to look after them and my staff and I have to take that on board and look after the younger lads.”

This is an extract from this morning’s interview with the manager, and the whole interview is now available on Gas Player.

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