Despite being held to a stalemate at Leek Town on Tuesday evening, Sol Campbell insists the most important thing is minutes on the pitch ahead of the new season.
Macclesfield may have failed to find the net at Harrison Park, yet the amount of chances created by his side left the boss pleased with what he saw.
“It was a good workout for the lads, it was entertaining” stated Campbell.
“I think the lads really moved the ball around and found those pockets. We had some great chances, they [Leek Town] really threw their bodies on the line and hats off to them.
"Leek really defended well and made it difficult for us in periods, but the thing for us and for me is seeing the lads’ fitness levels go up a little bit and our retention of the ball was good.
"Other than just the finishing touches now up front, the right timing of pass into the zone, and the timing of runs, we’re pretty close. We’re not there yet, we’re obviously still in pre-season, but it was nice to see some of the lads get ninety minutes under the belts”
“The main thing is that we got our chances, you know we just have to convert. If we didn’t get the chances I would be really concerned, but we had some really good chances, and for whatever reason, ricochets or Leek defenders doing heroics on the line, and the keeper making some good saves as well, it happens sometimes. The main thing for me is that the lads have got in the good positions, they’ve had good chances”
With little over a week until the kick-off of the 2019-20 season, Sol praised the energy levels of his side.
“We didn’t slow down, there’s obviously periods and they’re still going through this pre-season mode and they’ll get stronger.” said Sol.
“The main thing for me is some of the lads doing 90 minutes and that will give them the base , the foundation to kick on top of that. We’ve got another game on Saturday which will be a good tester game, so now they’re starting to get a bit more battle hardy, and getting that mental toughness into themselves to say right next game now and do another 90 and get stronger.”
The Silkmen created a host of chances on Tuesday night, and appeared to utilise the flanks where possible, yet the boss admitted that was not a specific game plan.
“I want to have a situation where I’ve got options. I’ve got options from the wings, I’ve got options from inside. When you play opposition they don’t know where the problems are coming from and that’s what I want really. I don’t want all in one place because you become predictable.If you’ve got someone that can come in from the left, someone from the right, guys who can come through the middle, then you become all round a better team”
Macclesfield only made two changes during the match as Campbell insists it’s important to get as many players 90 minutes as possible.
“I wanted to get 90 minutes, because it’s important to get at least 80, 90% of the team the full ninety minutes.
"Some of the players have already done 90 minutes, like Theo and Myles and Paddy, but we need to have a few more players get that 90 minutes under their belts .
"It's very important so then you get the stamina before the season starts. We’ve got one more game before the main season starts so we’ve just got to get as many players 90 minutes under their belt.”
Eddie Clarke joined the Silkmen on loan from Fleetwood Town earlier in the week as Sol looks to strengthen his squad even further and spoke about the potential of the full-back after his solid debut performance.
“I was speaking to the guys at Fleetwood, and the guys here - he is definitely a good addition for us. He carries the ball well, he’s enthusiastic, he’s kind of local as well which helps, he’s got a good shot on him, and he’ll get better.
"Good delivery, but also he’s got bags of energy and you know the more he trains, the more he plays at a higher level constantly the better he’s going to become, but yeah, real pleased to have him.”
With Macclesfield’s first League Two fixture being played on the 3rd August, the manager has stated it is likely the side will only play one more pre-season fixture.
“Yeah, I don’t really want to be playing another game midweek, that will be a week of concentration on agility and speedwork”.
By Conor O'Hara