Badgers set for action as new season commences

Assistant manager Darren Kelk believes Eastwood Town are as ready as they’ll ever be ahead of this weekend’s opening game of the season.

The Badgers head to Merseyside to play Marine on Saturday before hosting Hednesford Town next Tuesday night.

And after a pre-season of mixed results and plenty of new players arriving, Kelk feels everyone is keen to get going.

He said: “As a group we’re ready and pretty optimistic about what lies ahead.

“We’ll hopefully have everybody active at the last training session with the exception of Grant Ryan who will be out for a few weeks after a horror tackle at Carlton on Saturday.

“We had to leave one or two out last weekend as a precautionary measure but those players should be fit and ready for Saturday.”

Marine will pose a tough test for the opening game with the Badgers likely to be underdogs despite having been in a higher division last season.

Kelk said: “We’ve been working really hard on being solid defensively as we need to stop Marine playing through us.

“They’ll come at us, we know that, so we have to be ready. There’s enough attacking flair in our side so that aspect doesn’t worry me too much.

“Once this game is over we can then make more decisions about how to approach Hednesford on Tuesday.”

Eastwood lost 3-1 at Carlton in their final friendly, with Grant Ryan the Badgers scorer before he was injured.

Kelk added: “It was tough as the pitch was dreadful in that the grass must have been about four inches long, and then we lost Grant to a tackle not in keeping with a pre-season friendly.

“Carlton didn’t trouble us at all for half-an-hour but we then conceded some disappointing goals.”

Meanwhile, owner Steve Lynch says the club’s financial situation is improving all the time as it tries to sort out various debts.

He said: “Some of the issues involving previous owners are now being sorted out, though there’s still something of a three-way stand-off with the local council over some money owed there.

“What we need now is people to come to the games and for local businesses to get behind us too in terms of sponsorship.

“Player registrations are all with the FA so we’ll be ready to start the season, and hopefully if results go our way more people will come and support the team.”