Otters chairman praises development squad spirit

Ottery at home to Buckland Athletic. Ref shsp 06 20TI 7566. Picture: Terry Ife

Ottery at home to Buckland Athletic. Ref shsp 06 20TI 7566. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

The Ottery St Mary chairman has said it was great to see the ‘spirit’ and ‘talent’ of the development squad that took to the field for the first time this season last weekend.

Mikey Ringer said: “Last Saturday saw a young development squad take to the pitch with some that had not played in a senior match previously.

“It was great to see under the mentoring of the management and coaches how they took to the game, full of spirit and talent they put in a shift.

“At this stage of the proceedings no club or team are looking at the final result as we all know you can walk away winners of a game but doesn’t always mean the better side won.”

Ringer said the focus on pre-season for them is focused on getting players back playing after the extended break. He said: “We have a club ethos running through the veins of our players. The way new and old players have formed such a bond on and off the pitch is great and will transfer to a successful year.

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All three sides (the first team, the ladies’ team and the development squad) contest friendlies this weekend with the ladies looking to play their first game since February.

Ringer said the club is still not sure who their opening opponents will be in the first match of the Devon Football League 2020/21 season and that it is difficult to plan as the ‘goalposts move continously’

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He said: “It’s a difficult situation to know exactly what is expected from clubs as the goalposts move continuously. We fully understand why and are complying fully with everything we are given

“It has to be the most stressful and busy pre-season ever, players and fans will not see in the main what goes on however I have to say it pleases me to hear the thanks and the offers from help from our entire club players for the work that has been done.

“We resisted reopening fully until this past weekend and again the measures taken were in accordance with government guidelines, it’s always hard to manage fully and will always be hiccups along the way however it’s how you deal and react to them that matters which is what we do best as a club.

“Going forward, we will work with the police and other authorities to ensure we can make a proper social club atmosphere.

The youth section has also returned to training this week and Ringer has encouraged anyone who wants to help with the coaching or the admin to get in touch.

He said: “I’m pleased to say that it’s great to see so many of the teams getting back to training, keeping the children in shape and giving them a purpose and desire to achieve.

“We are blessed that we have all age groups covered in the mixed and girls sections and all are chomping at the bit to get playing again

“We are, however, looking for new people to get involved in the coaching side or support in the admin so if anyone is keen to be part of shaping children’s future, get in touch.

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