Ely City more than capable of standing strong after positive pre-season display, says joint-boss

PUBLISHED: 20:11 22 August 2020 | UPDATED: 20:11 22 August 2020

Ely City joint-managers Luke McAvoy (right) and Ben Farmer watch their side in action against Cambridge City. Picture: DAN MASON

Ely City joint-managers Luke McAvoy (right) and Ben Farmer watch their side in action against Cambridge City. Picture: DAN MASON

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Ely City joint-boss Luke McAvoy is optimistic his side can hold their own at step five after a positive display against higher-league opponents.

Action from Ely City vs Cambridge CIty in a pre-season friendly. Picture: DAN MASONAction from Ely City vs Cambridge CIty in a pre-season friendly. Picture: DAN MASON

The Robins were beaten 1-0 by Cambridge City today, their second defeat from five pre-season games this month, as they welcomed supporters back to the Demcom Stadium for the first time since the coronavirus lockdown began.

Some of McAvoy and joint-boss Ben Farmer’s new signings impressed in the defeat to City, having defended resolutely for much of the contest.

But while standing firm against a wave of attacks, despite going close themselves at times, McAvoy was pleased with the performance.

“We’re disappointed with the goal we conceded in the first five minutes when we weren’t switched on, but the rest of the game I was really pleased,” he said.

“I thought our shape was good and we limited them to a few chances.

“We didn’t set the world alight with our play on the ball; it was more without the ball. As a team, we defended well and we were hard to break down.”

Ely complete their pre-season schedule at home to Haverhill Borough on Thursday, August 27 (7.45pm), before visiting fellow Thurlow Nunn Premier Division side Godmanchester Rovers in an FA Cup extra preliminary round tie on Tuesday, September 1.

City have also been drawn away at Downham Town in the first qualifying round of the FA Vase on Saturday, September 19.

MORE: FA Cup draws pair rivals together in derby clashes

Jordan Foster and Ryan Harnwell have also returned to the club, and McAvoy hinted at making one more addition too.

“We’re trying to be solid and keep as many clean sheets as we can,” he said.“We know in our forwards with pace, we can always try and score on the counter.

“It hasn’t been a great pre-season through player availability with holidays, work commitments. Today was the first time we got near enough our best side out and still missing three or four.

“It’s more about trying to get the individuals at each game fit, so hopefully we’ll have everyone together for the first game of the season.

“We know we can hold our own. If we can get ourselves mid-table, that would be great.”

MORE: Ely City season chances boosted as they return to action for first time since lockdown

Ely begin their league campaign at Stanway Rovers on Saturday, September 5 after fixtures for next month were released by the Thurlow Nunn League.

ELY CITY SEPTEMBER LEAGUE FIXTURES

Sat 5 - Stanway Rovers (A)

Tues 8 - Thetford Town (H)

Sat 12 - Walsham-le-Willows (H)

Tues 22 - Swaffham Town (H)

Sat 26 - Norwich United (H)

Sep 30 - Godmanchester Rovers (A)

Ely City squad vs Cambridge City

Reynolds; Weinman, Brown, Capel, Harrison, Williams, Darling, Camara, Townshend, Revel, Pruden. Subs used: Ince, French.

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