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These 2 players stood out as Salford City ease past Tranmere Rovers

Last night saw Salford City travel to Tranmere Rovers for the final round of the Leasing.com trophy. They managed a 2-0 win and progressed to the next round.

Salford has been competing in the Leasing.com Trophy for the first time. Last night saw them win 2-0 which means they topped their group and have advanced to the next stage.

Collectively, the Salford squad put on a great performance. However, there was two stand out players.

Oscar Threlkeld opened the score sheet after only 2 minutes. Then, the Salford Captain, Liam Hogan managed to head home the winner.

Here’s why both of these players deserve praise for their performances…

Oscar Threlkeld

The ex Bolton player has only been with Salford since the start of this campaign. I have seen him in action and have been very impressed by him in the past.

I predicted that he would be a stand out player for Salford this season, however, he hasn’t had much game time.

Last night saw him start the game and score after 2 minutes. This goes to show that he should be in the squad more often.

Liam Hogan

The 30-year-old centre back started his first game for the Ammies this season last night. He has been watching from the sidelines due to recovery.

Now, he is back with the Captain’s armband on. Fans are happy to see him return. Especially when he scored.

In the 56th minute, he showed that he was back with a bang when he headed home the winner. This clearly shows that he is still working just as hard.

Two in, two out for Salford City tonight against Mansfield

Graham Alexander’s Salford side will be looking to try and take some points from tonight’s away clash with Mansfield.

After Salford’s weekend loss to Northampton, three points will be needed. However, taking just a point from the game might seem more likely as Mansfield are only one place above Salford in League Two.

The Ammies home form seems a lot better than their away form. They need to start finding goals away from the Peninsula Stadium.

One way that Graham Alexander can achieve that is to change his team up a bit. Here’s two players who should be on the bench and two to replace them…

Out: Adam Rooney

It’s not that the striker isn’t playing well, he has scored a few goals so far this season.

However, he seems to be more effective when he’s brought on as a substitute. Maybe he should be used in the last quarter of the game to try and motivate Salford’s attack.

Out: Craig Conway

The winger is another player who might benefit from being on the bench.

Alexander can always use Conway if his sidebar struggling but he did get subbed against Northampton. This could suggest that he is more beneficial to the team coming on as a substitute rather than starting.

In: Mani Dieseruvwe

I have said since the start of Salford’s League Two campaign that Dieseruvwe deserves more of a chance.

He was defective at the beginning of the season for Salford but now is just used as a late substitute most games. Maybe starting him could motivate the team to attack.

In: Oscar Threlkeld

Threlkeld is one of Salford’s most underrated players in my opinion. I saw him in preseason and he’s very versatile.

This is why I think he deserves more of a chance. He can operate the defense and midfield but is also effective as a winger. Why not give him a chance to see if there’s a difference in the squad?

Do Salford City need to do anything in the remaining transfer window weeks

With only a couple of weeks left in the transfer window for leave one and two, The Football Manc Cave is looking at what Salford City can do.

If they manage to make any more signings in these next two weeks then it can only be a bonus to the squad. In my opinion, after seeing them twice in pre-season, I don’t think any new signings in any area is a priority. They’ve signed some great players who just need a little more work.

At the end of the day, Salford only got promoted at the end of last season and there were naturally average expectations for their standard of football in a new league. They had some tough pre-season games like Middlesbrough and Woking which saw some newbies like Richie Towell and Oscar Threlkeld in action.

They’ve done pretty well in League Two so far and they’ve found players that have helped them reach the standards required in this new league. They won their opening league fixture at home against Stevenage and managed a draw recently against Port Vale, 1-1. Considering they’re new to League Two, this is a good start.

Fitting the jigsaw pieces

It’s not new signings that they need to be looking at, they just need to find places for their new signings and see which position best suits their players. Ritchie Towell was amazing in pre-season. He creates chances, finds the back of the net sometimes and fights for every ball. From what I saw in the friendly games, it seems Salford can create chances very well, they just struggle to pass in the box from time to time, this can be because of greed a lot of the time.

When they are on top form, they play brilliantly and the chances they create usually end up in the back of the net. The squad just need to keep in the back of their mind that they have moved up a league and they don’t want to end up going back down.

Salford City’s strong start shows they’re not here to make up numbers

Salford City got off to a great start in League Two as they managed to beat Stevenage 2-0 at home.

I got to see Salford’s pre-season games and it’s safe to say that fans didn’t get to see the best out of their team. There was some good football and stand out players, however a lot of losses, this made people wonder how they would perform in the league. This game was also going to be on Sky so the added pressure was something that people thought might throw them off. They surprised in their first home game of the season after being the stronger side and managing to bag a win.

First Half

The Ammies didn’t only get off to a great start in the league but a strong start in this game too. A couple of minutes in, they managed to win a corner. Newbie Ritchie Towell stuck out as he went in for every challenge and tried to put the pressure on.

Stevenage also tried to apply the pressure but Salford’s defence was just too tight for them. It only took 17 minutes for Salford’s Rooney to hit the bar. It was at this point when they became the favourites as chance after chance meant a goal would soon come.

26 minutes in, Stevenage did manage to get the ball in the back of the net only for it to be ruled offside and Salford to respond in the best way. After a series of passes and the Ammies trying to show they meant business, Wiseman brilliantly controlled the ball and hit a long pass which managed to reach Mani Dierseruvwe and he scored Salford’s first-ever league goal.

At the 32 minute mark, Dierseruvwe nearly put Salford 2-0 up after another great bit of play from Towell. Salford managed to keep their lead until half time. At this point, the second half could have gone one of two ways. Either Salford would have come back out feeling inspired after the first half or Stevenage would have been told to work harder and Salford could have slipped in standards.

Second Half

Coming out and showing they wanted the win, Salford clearly had a half time team talk that made them motivated to win even more. Just after the whistle went, Wiseman nearly assisted Salford’s second as he crossed it into the box and it just missed Towell and Dierseruvwe.

It was only the second minute of the second half when Mani Dierseruvwe finally got rewarded for his efforts and put the Ammies 2-0 up. This came from a clever free-kick headed down by Piergianni which couldn’t be blocked by the Stevenage players in the box and Mani Dierseruvwe bagged his second.

55 minutes in and nearly a third for Mani again after Towell managed to push forward and find the striker, only for his shot to be put wide. Salford kept on this same pressure until the end of the game.

In the 77th minute, Richie Towell’s time was up as he was subbed. Even though he created most of the Ammies chances and looked really promising for the rest of the season, he had managed to get a yellow card in the first half so taking him off was probably sensible as he does go on for every ball.

Ten minutes later and Mani Dierseruvwe was also taken off. He only had two minutes of normal time to get a hat trick but was still taken off. This may have been just to waste time. Oscar Threlkeld made his debut for the club when he replaced the goal scorer.

The Ammies managed to win 2-0 after five minutes of injury time. It was a great performance for them and fans were left feeling very happy and excited for the rest of the season. I am also glad that Oscar Threlkeld and Ritchie Towell got to make appearances as I wrote an article this week on why the pair should be given a chance in Salford’s first game of the season. The very promising performance has set high standards not only for Salford but for all League two teams.

Two players that must appear for Salford City today

Salford City’s opening fixture in League two will see them face Stevenage and The Football Manc Cave have picked out two players who should feature in the game.

I was at two of Salford City’s pre-season matches and got a good idea on who will be stand out players for them as they go into League Two. The promotion will be hard as a whole new league will prove difficult. However, new signings this summer have brought fresh and energetic legs into the mix. With that in mind, here are two of those players who should make an appearance this weekend…

Ritchie Towell

The 28-year-old played in both games that I got to see this summer and he stood out for me. The midfielder has pace and will run players down the middle. He will create chances and score. I saw him find the back of the net in their friendly against Woking and he really deserved the goal. Despite only signing for the Ammies this summer, he seems to have blended in perfectly and will be a stand out player this season.

Being a part of the squad today whether it be starting, or bringing him on in the second half will see a burst of energy on the pitch that should drive the whole team forward.

Oscar Threlkeld

Threlkeld is a product of Bolton’s youth and has spent the majority of his career at Plymouth Argyle. He joined Salford this summer and again, I got to see him in action. If he isn’t started against Stevenage then he should definitely be brought on at some point, especially if the Ammies are behind or struggling. In both games, he tried to run down the wings to create crosses that would hopefully lead to goals if he gets a chance in the league.

The 25-year-old is another player who seems to have gelled well with his new teammates, and will contribute towards a successful season for Salford.

Salford City can take positives away from defeat

After going to watch Salford City take on Woking on Friday night. I had to return to see them face Championship side, Middlesbrough last night.

Friday night’s match didn’t look like it would go ahead as the rain kept coming down, however, after the weather calmed down, it did go ahead. Unfortunately, Salford lost 3-1. This game was completely opposite in terms of the weather as the heat meant the teams had to take water breaks. Salford also got a chance to show off their new white kit as opposed to their usual home colour, red. There was also a lot more fans at this game as they anticipated the opposition, Championship club, Boro’.

As we know, friendlies are used to give as many players as possible the chance to warm up before the season starts and this was no different. One of the biggest changes came in keepers as Kyle Letheren started the game.

First Half

Middlesbrough opened up the game with a series of chances and they looked impressive, they just couldn’t find the back of the net.

At the 10 minute mark, Richie Towell stood out for me again as he created Salford’s first chance of the game. It, unfortunately, went a couple of yards in front of Mani Dieseruvwe which put it out of his reach.

20 minutes in and a Mark Shelton corner found Liam Hogan who managed to head the ball into the middle, and find Louis Maynard who headed it home. Salford was 1-0 ahead and fans were happy with their team’s performance so far.

The Ammies didn’t give much away as they deserved to be on top. New keeper, Kyle Letheren was given a chance to shine in the 23rd minute. Middlesbrough player, Ashley Fletcher, received the ball at the top of the area and was denied by a fantastic first save from Letheren. He blocked another shot immediately from Assombalonga, even though he was offside. This also resulted in Salford fans singing, “Championship, you’re havin’ a laugh,” which probably came too soon.

The drinks break was exactly what Boro’ needed as a few minutes later, as they won a free-kick. It was taken quickly, a cross from Marvin Johnson came in from the right, and Assombalonga’s header found the back of the net with a header.

With two minutes to half time, they created a chance as their equaliser inspired them to push for another. After a big push forward, in the 45th minute, the Ammies thought they’d taken the Championship club to the halfway point at a draw. Unfortunately, Britt Assombalonga’s powerful volley found the back of the net again. It was a fantastic goal that even the Salford fans clapped along with.

Second Half

Going into the second half, Graham Alexander made a couple of changes. Mark Shelton and Kyle Letheren’s chances were up as they were replaced by Joey Jones and Chris Neal.

It took a while for the half to get going with the subs and both teams were head to head.

This didn’t throw Boro’ off their game as the 66th minute came around, and another brilliant goal from Britt Assombalonga completed his hat trick. This 3rd goal caused the Ammies to shake up their side again as fans were becoming frustrated.

The starting eleven that were struggling to pass before were now replaced, with a team of players who were creating great passes and skill, Threlkeld especially for me. The 89th minute saw Salford push for a second goal with Rooney on the ball, he went straight for goal instead of passing, even though Tom Walker was stood in a perfect position, unmarked and screaming for the ball. Walker ended up punching the ground in frustration as the fans were screaming.

There were a few scrambled chances before the final whistle, however, Salford ended up losing 3-1 again.

Salford looked a lot stronger and you have to credit their efforts seeings as they were playing a Championship club. They’ll need to tighten up their defence and passing ability before the start of the season. Some positives, however, Ritchie Towell looks really promising. He scored against Woking and tried to win every ball in this game too. He’ll be one to watch.

Salford City still to fit the jigsaw pieces together following defeat

Salford City’s pre-season campaign got underway last night as they went up against National League side, Woking.

In what looked like a game that was about to be called off due to the weather causing the pitch to be partially flooded, the Ammies were definitely tested.

Preseason friendlies are put in place to warm players up, get everyone back into the swing of things and show to the management and coaching staff which players deserve a chance in league football. This game gave fans a chance to see Salford’s summer signings, Richie Towell, Oscar Threlkeld, Joey Jones and Dan Jones in action.

Upon arrival at the Peninsula Stadium, the grounds staff were working hard to clear the pitch in order for the game to go ahead. Fans were told that refunds would be available if the friendly couldn’t go ahead. Finally, confirmation was given that the match would go ahead, only 45 minutes later than planned and kick-off finally got underway at 8.15pm.

Three minutes was all fans had to wait to see a chance created for Salford, as a cross from Tom Walker tried to find Threlkeld and Jake Beesley, unfortunately, either failed to make a connection. Nearly ten minutes later, Danny Lloyd nearly finds the back of the net twice and narrowly misses again. It was a promising start for Graham Alexander’s side.

Woking started to get back into the game slowly and had their first chance after 16 minutes. After a series of back and forth, Woking’s Ben Gerring hammers in the opening goal of the match as Chris Neal fails to clear the ball.

It was in the 26th minute when the Ammies managed to get back into the game as new signing, Richie Towell got his shot to shimmy past a defender and land in the top right of the net. This was the Salford fans wanted to see. Shortly after, another newbie, Joey Jones ended up in a nasty clash. Resulting in him having to leave the pitch and go straight down the tunnel for assistance.

There was then some delightful skill from Towell who seemed to have a good game. He managed to get past three players and find Beesley, who’s shot was, unfortunately, rebounded off the keeper to find Adam Rooney but the ball is smothered by the keeper again.

Going into the second half

Woking made it extremely hard for the Ammies to get forward and it was more like a game of headers and volleys in the first half. Half time came around and it was time for Graham Alexander to make a few changes. There was a player on trial last night who’s efforts came to an end as he was substituted for Danny Whitehead.

This didn’t make too much of a difference however as the 52nd minute came around, and Dave Tarpey of Woking managed to take the ball around Neal in a one on one engagement and find the back of the net putting Salford 2-1 down.

A couple more pushes from the Ammies came after the goal and in the 58th minute, a handball from Woking resulted in a free-kick that Richie Towell stepped up to take. The shot went too high and missed which annoyed a few fans who could clearly see Oscar Threlkeld stood on the edge of the box, unmarked, completely clear and onside who was ignored.

Mark Shelton replaced Towell and almost ten minutes later in a moment of desperation, Graham Alexander took off, Nathan Pond, Threlkeld, Walker, Beesley, Rooney, Dan Jones and Danny Lloyd. They were replaced with Wiseman, Touray, Hogan, Dieseruvwe, Rodney, Gaffney and Doyle. These players managed to create the odd bursts of energy although Woking’s efforts kept them away from goal as Paul Hodges slotted the ball past Neal for a third.

Salford still need some fine-tuning

It was a disappointing night for the Ammies. A lot of fans walked out early, probably to shelter from the rain. Even though Alexander’s side suffered a 3-1 loss, this is only preseason and a chance to try different things. Having three new signings in a starting line up is always a risk as you can’t predict how they’re going to perform together.

Hopefully, Tuesday night’s friendly against Middlesbrough will see Salford’s team look a little tighter. There were some really good bursts of football in the match. I think the team just needs to be put together a little bit better now that management has an idea of what’s working.

Salford City’s midfield against Woking should look like this tonight – agree?

Salford City will face Woking again in a pre-season friendly tonight. The Football Manc Cave take a look at what their possible midfield line could look like after their summer signings aim to please.

Alan Dowson’s side will visit the Peninsula Stadium in Salford City’s first home friendly. The clubs faced each other last year and Salford managed a 1-0 win. In order to achieve the same this year, the Ammies will need to put out a good team.

They’ve got a list of options for their midfield positions and here’s who I think should be given a chance against Woking presuming the formation leaves them in need of four players.

Oscar Threlkeld

The defensive midfielder only signed for Salford over the summer and the pre-season games will give him the perfect opportunity to show his worth. He’s known as a defender profoundly although he has played in a defensive midfield position comfortably before and is listed on Salford’s website as a midfielder. This could give Graham Alexander a perfect opportunity to play him in both positions and shift him around to see where he sits best.

Mark Shelton

Shelton suffered last season with an injury which put him out for four months. He got over this and came back fighting. The midfielder was then a part of the team that saw Salford promoted at the end of the season. He should now get an opportunity to try and prove himself in pre-season, and it’ll give him a chance to keep his fitness up.

Joey Jones

I would let all my new signings take a start in a friendly to see how they cope or, at least bring them on at some point. Jones only joined the Ammies this summer just like Threlkeld. He has also played for Woking in the past which will be interesting to see him go up against his old teammates.

Richie Towell

Finally, another new signing. This might sound like a risky line-up but as I said, new signings should be given a chance in pre-season friendlies as it gives everyone an idea of how they will perform. It also gives them a chance to impress. It was Towell’s birthday this week so a start would be a great present for the midfielder. He’s already been seen in training and a friend that has already taken place, so he could get another chance to shine on a Friday.

3 players that should use pre-season to impress for Salford City

As Salford City head into their new and exciting League Two campaign. The Football Manc Cave have selected three players who will be aiming to impress before the season starts.

Graham Alexander’s team managed to secure promotion from the National League to League Two at the end of last season via the playoffs. I think it’s safe to say that all of the team, including new signings, will all be out to impress and aim for another promotion.

Salford won a pre-season friendly 4-0 this week against SAK 1914. There’s been no confirmation of goal scorers yet, although newly signed players have been seen with the squad.

With that in mind, here are 3 players that will want to show they can step up and prove, that they’re worth taking a chance on this coming season.

Oscar Threlkeld

The Bolton born man spent a lot of his career shuffling between Bolton Wanderers and Plymouth Argyle. He’s only signed for the Ammies this summer and fans are excited to see him in action. Threlkeld will be looking to break into the squad as soon as possible. He’s very versatile, as he’s a known midfielder who can also play in defensive positions. I think he’ll make a big impact on fans and the team next season.

Joey Jones

Previously being a part of Arsenal, Leicester City, Yeovil Town, Woking Town and Eastleigh. The 25-year-old will be looking to make an impression. Salford hasn’t been strangers to signing players this summer, so he will have a fight in his hands if he wants to get games. If he can get the chance to prove that he is worth being in the Salford defence, he will want to go all out as he’s been subject to a lot of free transfers over the years.

Mani Dieseruvwe

A player who has been in the squad for a few years now. He broke into the squad last season in the team’s campaign to win promotion. I imagine he will now be hungry to prove that he’s worth a shot, whether it be bringing him off the bench in desperate times or starting him. Salford had another friendly with Atherton recently, where Dieseruvwe scored the only goal of the game. I think he’s trying his best to put his name out there already.

3 youth players that need to step up and impress in pre-season for Bolton Wanderers

With the situation behind the scenes at Bolton Wanderers seemingly improving, the Football Manc Cave thought they’d have a look at three youth players who will look to impress.

Bolton Wanderers were in an awful financial situation at the end of last season that saw players and management go unpaid, fan protests and also resulted in relegation. It’s now looking as though a buyer has been found in Football Ventures headed by Sharon Brittan, and some normality can start to take place again.

Bolton still hasn’t confirmed anything substantial as of yet. Which means the squad is still short of players and pre-season training has been mocked by fans, with the number of players actually there. As the situation hopefully draws to a close, players will hopefully be recruited. However, until then, I have picked out three of the younger players that will want to make a difference to the team and try to start making an impact now.

Liam Edwards

The 22-year-old spent his youth with Stoke City before he signed for Bolton. He got sent out on loan to Southport last season to get some playing time and experience. The centre back will be hoping for the first team to give him a chance as there’s not a lot of players to choose from. There’s actually no defenders listed on the club website so far, which will put him at the top of the empty list until Bolton can sign some players. He’ll look to make an impression in pre-season friendlies.

Dennis Politic

The 19-year-old midfielder will more than likely be called up to the first time this season after his loan to Salford City last year. The Romanian midfielder came back from his loan this year and is now straight back into training. According to the Bolton News, he’s supposedly impressing management and the squad with his attitude towards being a part of the struggling team. The teenager will want to meet the first team criteria and prove that he’s ready to start next season.

Ronan Darcy

The 18-year-old striker who made a name for himself after, being brought on as a substitute in Bolton’s last game of the season against Nottingham Forest last year. He is another player alongside Politic that is impressing with his positive attitudes towards training and being a part of the team. The youngster may have to be an option for Bolton if the financial situation goes on any longer, and stops them from bringing in recruits.

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