Saturday afternoon’s double-header of friendly fixtures brought a return to action for attacking midfielder Brennan Dickenson and defender Rod McDonald, with both having missed out on a few days of training with minor niggles.
Assistant head coach Gav Skelton said: “Brennan came through it all good over at Hebburn, which is very pleasing.
“Rod played at Workington, with no problems, so that’s really good for both players. Magnus [Norman] is another one who had a slight problem but he shouldn’t be far off at all, hopefully next week. Hopefully he has no setbacks and he’s ready to go.
“Keelan Leslie will be two or three weeks before he’s back in training and I think, from that point, it’ll be another week or so before he gets involved.
“Overall we’re doing well in terms of players staying fit, and that’s one of the things you want from pre-season. Like I say, everybody came through it on Saturday so we’re ready to go again for another busy week.”
And on players being used in unfamiliar roles, he told us: “We have played some players in different positions, but that was always the plan.
“Lewis Bell was in centre midfield in the second half at Hebburn, and he did well. We changed it round quite a lot to look at different people in different areas so that they’re used to it for if they’re needed in those positions during the season.
“Again in terms of fitness it’s very good and really beneficial from looking at people who can adapt to different responsibilities in what are probably not their preferred positions. It’s all part of the mentality we’re looking to grow.”