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MANAGER: It'll be another tough game

Steven Pressley ahead of the Chester friendly

16 July 2019

United boss Steven Pressley confirmed that tonight’s visit to Chester will see the bulk of the first team squad play a part, with a number of players from the under-18 squad also in the running to feature.

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“All of our pre-season games are about getting pitch time into the players,” he said. “We’ll make sure we get minutes into legs for as many of them as possible, and obviously we want to take another look at the trialists before we make a decision on them.”

Defenders Tyrone Duffus and Aaron Hayden are likely to get the chance to impress the manager, with midfielders Isaac Buckley-Ricketts and Lewis Brunt, and striker Elliott Reeves, also likely to pull on the blue shirt.

“This will be a good game against tough opposition,” the manager continued. “As with the previous two friendlies, we’ll be looking for certain aspects in how we go about things, without necessarily expecting too much from the tactical side of things.

“They’re a team with a number of former football league players and they’ll be looking to push on with their pre-season as well. I’m sure they’ll provide us with a very good challenge.”

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Chester boast a number of faces familiar to the Blues with Simon Grand and Danny Livesey partnered up at the heart of the defence once more. Both became United legends during their time at Brunton Park.

Striker George Waring played 10 games for the Cumbrians through the second half of the 2016/17 season when he joined on loan from Stoke City.

Meanwhile assistant manager Gav Skelton confirmed on Saturday afternoon that midfielder Kelvin Etuhu has started back on the road to full recovery following the hamstring tear picked up during the Grimsby away game in April.

“He’s a little bit off full training just yet, but he’s started rehab,” he said. “It’s still longer-term for him but he’s been around the group, and it’s good to have him in the dressing room.

“He’s an excellent character and well liked, so to have him around is good for the group, and I’m sure it also provides a lift for him as well.”

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