The Football Manc Cave

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3 players that need to step up and impress in pre-season for Oldham Athletic

Laurent Banide’s pre-season could be reflected in Oldham Athletic’s starting 11 we see on a weekly basis during the EFL League Two campaign. This means that the players have to impress.

Oldham Atheltic will face two local sides in their pre-season friendlies; Bolton Wanderers and Rochdale. Both of which will be competing in the league above next season in the EFL League One.

Should manager Laurent Banide provide solid performances against their higher tier neighbours it will put them in good stead going into their new campaign. In his first press conference, Banide stressed the importance of a ‘hands-on’ approach with the players. Therefore, many weaknesses in individuals that we saw in previous years, may well be vastly improved upon. Following the fantastically appraised coaching skills of Banide have been put into place.

However, Banide cannot attempt to achieve a high table finish on his own, he needs to get the best out of his squad.

The French manager is testing new waters with his first experience in English football. But Banide has a wealth of knowledge in coaching players to be the best they can be.

Thierry Henry referred to the once Monaco coach as “one of the greatest coaches” he has ever worked with.

In order for the Latics to improve on their recent seasons, the entire squad need a new attitude and change of approach. In a squad full of potential quality, here are three specific players who need to step up and impress the boss in the pre-season.

Giles Coke

Coke is a 33-year-old central or right-sided midfielder, who wears the number 7 shirt for Oldham since he signed in the summer of 2018. The Englishman has played for several clubs in both England and Scotland. Coke is a dominant character on the field and should be a figurehead for the younger players in the squad. With one year remaining on his contract, he should be pushing to get his team promoted.

Alex Iacovetti

Iacovetti is a recent signing for the Latics following a loan spell last season. The 21-year-old centre-back has been shown to be working hard in training on social media. However, Oldham’s defensive capabilities were of great concern last season. This means that young Scottish international has every chance of seeing first team action should he demonstrate improvements to the defence.

A new striker?

Last season, loanee Callum Lang scored the most goals for Oldham last season with 13. With his return to Wigan Atheltic, Oldham desperately need a striker who can hit the back of the net 20 times in a season.

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