In a game that saw Rangers Reserves come back from 1-0 down to lead 3-1 through a brace by Jack Holliday and a goal from Will Hodson. A last-minute penalty for Harlow made it a nervy finish, but Rangers held on to beat last season’s Harrogate & District Premier Champions.
Following the game, stand-in Manager John-Paul Williams spoke to KDRAFC TV Media Man Pete Arnett.
On the game itself ….
“I think for me; we didn’t follow up on enough chances. I also think that at times there was too big a gap between the front three and the midfield, which we did address. We played three thirty minutes and moved people around as we looked to close that gap. Towards the end we got that and we looked really dangerous.
A few times people tried to shoot, which you expect in a Pre-Season game, when perhaps they should have passed, but everyone is trying to battle for a position at the moment. There’s a lot of competition at the moment for places, and I was really pleased with the lads today. I thought it was a good performance, especially after Thursday and some of these lads have only had a day’s rest. It’s been a tough Pre-Season, but I was definitely happy with the performance today.”
On playing against one attacker and the problems it can bring …
“Yeah, we had to talk to our lads about this during the first break about being careful and make sure that we have a sweeper to try and deny the striker the ball. To say it was a brand new back four again today, and with the subs, we probably used about seven players in the defence and for about the first thirty or forty minutes, after they tried the long ball, we sorted it out and stopped them playing it to him, which meant they had to alter their approach.”
On players that caught the eye ….
“Sam Straker and Will Hodson played well today. Will has been around the place before and he’s had a couple of seasons away, but he’s come back in and played well. There is a lot of competition for places out wide, but I think he put a good case forward today.
Straker for me was a step above today. We asked him to play in the middle of midfield and to be fair, it’s his natural position, although he has played out wide for us quite a bit. We saw the difference today when he came off for twenty minutes with our creativity and we are lucky at the club that we have two Straker’s that can do that!”
On overcoming the frustration from Thursday’s game…
“There was a lot of positivity out there today which was a hundred percent better then Thursday. I think that there was a lot of frustration with the players about their ability or performance against Railway and with the competitions for places I think players are taking it really seriously as they want to play. Kirk Deighton are wanting to go places and this is one of the reasons why we have so many players coming down and wanting to take part. We spoke about after the game on Thursday and I think they responded really well today. Everyone backed each other up today and pulled each other away from potential situations, which was spot on.”