NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Pre-season drubbing acts as a reality check for Soham Town Rangers

Soham Town Rangers target Jack Chandler in action for previous club Godmanchester Rovers. Picture: D

Soham Town Rangers target Jack Chandler in action for previous club Godmanchester Rovers. Picture: DUNCAN LAMONT - Credit: Archant

Assistant boss Erkan Okay admitted Soham Town Rangers’ friendly drubbing at Ely City was ‘not acceptable’.

Sorry Soham slumped to an 8-1 defeat in the pre-season fixture at the Unwin Ground on Tuesday night.

And the defeat may well have come at a further cost with captain Lee Chaffey being forced off by an Achilles problem which will now be assessed.

"We were missing players and it was evident a lot of lads were playing together for the first time," said Okay.

"But those things are not excuses for the result. A scoreline like this is not acceptable - regardless of whether it was a pre-season friendly or not.

"It was definitely a reality check for us as a management team and a group of players. No-one came out of that game with any credit and it shows there is a lot of work ahead."

Trialist Jack Chandler saw a penalty saved when the game was still goalless and Lewis Clayton hit a consolation during the second half.

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Former Godmanchester Rovers man Chandler is a top target for Rangers as they bid to boost their attacking options. He has scored close to 50 goals at Step 5 in the past two seasons.

Rangers have already signed two players from the Huntingdonshire club this summer after tempting full-back Alex Brown and frontman Matty Allan to Julius Martin Lane.

Okay added: "Jack has had two very good seasons for Godmanchester and feels like he is ready for the step up.

"We were lacking in wide areas towards the end of last season and he would be a great addition if we can get him in.

"We need to strengthen up defensively as well and we're also looking to make signings in that area if possible."

Another trialist Luke Lindsey suffered concussion in the defeat to Ely, but he remains in Rangers plans.

Soham had to pull out of their scheduled Saturday friendly at March Town due to player unavailability.

Rangers now travel to two Step 5 sides with a Saturday date at Stowmarket (3pm) followed by a Tuesday visit to Newmarket (7.45pm).

Soham kick-off the newly-named Bet Victor North Division season with a trip to Maldon & Tiptree on August 17 with a home derby against newly-promoted Histon following on August 20.

Rangers then enter the FA Cup at the first qualifying round stage with a home clash against either Biggleswade United or Swaffham Town on August 24.

They host either Lincoln United or Bury Town in the preliminary round of the FA Trophy on October 12.