Gavin’s Pre-season Philosophy

By Andrew Warshaw

Gavin Macpherson has outlined his strategy for our pre-season programme by saying he will use the matches to get a feel for the personnel at his disposal and make any necessary alterations as we build towards the new season.

Winning all the time in pre-season, says Gavin, is certainly not the most ideal way of preparing for the challenges that lie ahead.

In a recent interview with David Square’s “Our Local Non League” show, Gavin struck a realistic tone when discussing how he approaches pre-season.

“There are not many managers at our level who are totally satisfied during the pre-season programme that they have things totally spot on,” he said.

“But pre-season is there to tell you exactly where you’re at. I’ve said it many times, the worst thing you can do in pre-season is win every game.”

“Obviously supporters want you to win whether it’s a league game or a friendly.  But we have a specific pattern in pre-season where we look at certain things, both out of and in possession, so that the boys are ready to go from day one.”

In terms of predicting the outcome of the new campaign, Gavin is understandably circumspect.

 “I’m not a manager who is going to go out there and makes wild predictions. We go about our business quietly to achieve the best possible outcome. I’m not fazed by other teams’ budgets.”

Regarding a playing system once the season comes around in August, Gavin re-iterated his preference for employing an attack-minded two up front with a back four but stressed this was flexible.

“Normally you’re talking 4-1-3-2 or similar but we work religiously to have a number of systems nailed down with a slight tweak so the players understand what they are doing, whether it be 4-4-1-1 or 4-2-3-1, if and when we might need to.”

“Yes we have a nailed down DNA in terms of how we want to play but I’ve got a fantastic team around me and we will look at being comfortable with three systems. We will not make changes for changes’ sake but you’ve got to be adaptable.”