Manager’s Notes: vs Northwich Victoria, Saturday 4 August – West Didsbury & Chorlton AFC

Manager’s Notes: vs Northwich Victoria, Saturday 4 August

Notes taken from the programme for our opening day fixture against Northwich Victoria – read our match preview here. Programme available on the gate, priced £2.

Good afternoon and welcome to today’s opening fixture in the Hallmark Security League 2018/19 season against Northwich Vics. I would like to welcome manager Steve Wilkes and his officials and players to Brookburn Road and, after today, wish them every success in the coming season. Vics have recruited well over the summer and are looking a strong bet to be challenging at the top end of the table. We will therefore need a big effort from the whole team today if we are to get a favourable result.

As for ourselves we have seen something of a turnover of players since the end of last season so I will quickly summarise some of the comings and goings so far.

Leaving the club are keeper Aaron Ashley, who has been offered a permanent contract coaching at the Manchester City Academy, and we wish Aaron every success in his new job. Matty Kay and Ashley Woods have joined Evo Stik NPL sides Mossley and Trafford respectively. Both players have played for their new clubs previously and we wish them both well. Chris Middleton has signed for league newcomers Wythenshawe Town and Ben Reader has signed for Squires Gate. Lanre Olapade has returned to his parent club Ashton Utd.

Joining the club are goalkeepers Will Jones who joins us from Droylsden and Ollie Culkin, whose father Nick counts Manchester United amongst his many clubs in a long career. John Mason, Rory Breslin and Jack Langford join us from Maine Road. John is a centre half while Rory and Jack are midfielders. Attacking midfielders Zach Cooper and Sam Grimshaw have also joined us, Zach from Trafford and Sam on a dual registration. Midfielder Hussain Mohammed was previously a YTS at Northampton Town and is just getting back involved with football after spending time in America. Nathan McDonald was at Mossley with me some years ago and likewise is looking to get back into the game.

These notes are written prior to my wedding last Sunday and at the time of writing we are looking at 2 or 3 more players who you may have seen in the Rylands and Wythenshawe Amateurs friendlies playing as ‘trialists’. Any progress with any of them will be reported on the club website and will be updated in my next notes. As you may surmise from the above I will be missing the game today due to being on my honeymoon and I will be back for the Squires Gate Cup tie next Saturday.

At the start of a new season I would like to say another big thank you to all our supporters for your tremendous efforts last season, including a new ground record crowd of 865 at the Maine Road game.

The players and management team are determined to reward your loyalty with a much better season than the last one, so thanks once again for your support and enjoy the game.