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Interviews

INTERVIEW: We stepped up the minutes on the pitch

25 July 2016

Midfielder Luke Joyce on the Barrow game

We caught up with United midfielder Luke Joyce shortly after full-time at Barrow on Saturday to talk about pre-season and getting ready for the big kick off in a fortnight’s time.

“We knew it was going to be a tough test,” he said. “Barrow play in the Conference and there isn’t a massive difference between the levels. They’ve signed players who have a lot of league experience so they were never going to make it easy for us.

“We created a few chances but we couldn’t put them away on the day. The important thing is that we’ve stepped up the minutes on the pitch for people, with some getting 90 and others getting 60 or 70. The fitness is coming back for everyone and you can see the understandings we need are starting to form as well. Obviously we’d have liked to have won it but it just didn’t happen for us.”

“It’s games like this with a real competitive edge which will get us ready,” he continued. “Barrow play like a League Two team and we’ll face battles against big, physical sides like them going forward. We need to be able to deal with that. 

“Pre-season has seen us do a lot of hard miles on the training pitch already and now we’re moving on to look at the technical and tactical side of it. We’re trying to implement the style of play we want to use in games, which we did at Barrow, and that’s what we’ll concentrate on with the start of the season being only two weeks away.”

On the end result at the weekend, he said: “You do feel disappointed because you want to win every game. You’re expected to beat teams from lower divisions but it isn’t always as easy as that. 

“Winning does mean a lot, and especially for me when I’m coming up against a good friend like Danny Livesey – I’m sure he’ll be sending texts and snapchats once he gets home! He’s a great lad and it’s nice to see him looking so well.

“It would have been nice to get one over on him but it was their day and they nicked it with that penalty.”

“We’ve got Bury and Bradford coming up now and hopefully I’ll get more minutes,” he concluded. “It’s about battling away and trying to earn a place in the starting eleven for the first game. 

“It’s creeping up on us fast because it doesn’t seem that long ago we were coming back for the first day. It’s exciting times and we’re looking forward to getting on with it.”

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