"The clear must-do-better is putting the ball in the back of the net," says Millington after friendly draw against Fylde

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Town boss Chris Millington says his side need to show more composure in-front of goal after their goalless draw against AFC Fylde.

The Shaymen looked the likelier to score but missed some good chances in the behind-closed-doors friendly.

"A really good experience, really worthwhile, a good work-out physically, a high output from the lads who played and lots of positives in how the lads are gelling together now," Millington told the Courier.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"We're seeing some real connections, bearing in mind Rob Harker's only played a few minutes towards the end, Milli Alli and Angelo Cappello weren't involved and there were others who didn't get many minutes - Max Wright, we're building up slowly.

Chris MillingtonChris Millington
Chris Millington

"But the connections between the lads who played most of the game were really pleasing.

"So lot of positives. The obvious one (lacking) is taking our chances.

"In the first-half there were six really clear-cut chances. Four of them came off the counter, one off good possession where Flo Hoti's hit the post and we've not followed it up and one of them off a cross where Cookie could have finished it off, but I'm not picking out Jamie Cooke because he did a lot of work for us and created a couple of good counter-attacks by winning the ball back high up the pitch.

"We should have scored off those as well.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"So loads of positives, and the clear must-do-better is putting the ball in the back of the net."

When asked how his side can do that, Millington said: "Just a bit of composure in-front of goal.

"Theses aren't half-chances. Large portions of last season, we were creating half-chances and bits of chances in games, but these were clear-cut chances.

"That's really positive, that they're one-on-one's with the keeper, but we've got to be mindful of the fact that we can't be so wasteful in the league, we've got to take those chances.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"If we do, we can go in with a two or three goal advantage at half-time and that generally leads to a victory."

The game was originally due to be played at the National Squash Centre and Regional Arena, but had to be moved.

"The pitch we had arranged in Manchester had suffered as a result of excess rain," Millington explained.

"We had another 3G in Manchester we could have jumped on but Fylde had already lined this up as a back-up having identified the potential issue with the forecast, so we're really grateful for their help in getting the game on and hope they found it as worthwhile as we did."

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Defender Tom Clarke was meant to start the game but wasn't risked on the 3G surface.

"And it was an opportunity to get Keano 60 minutes because he's been waiting patiently for his opportunity, having been a bit behind the others at the beginning of pre-season," Millington said.

On the absences of Milli Alli and Angelo Cappello, the Town boss said: "Milli is just managing minutes, and similar with Angelo, he did 90 minutes the other day so we wanted to make sure we got 90 minutes into other players - Ryan Galvin, Jamie Cooke.

"We wanted to get as many minutes as possible out of Aaron Cosgrave because he didn't figure against Sheff U, so it's just about building up players' minutes at the moment.

"And they were the two who needed it less."

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

New signing Florent Hoti stood out for The Shaymen with an impressive performance.

"He's a good player, he's got a lot of ability on the ball, he's certainly not afraid of a tackle, he'll put his foot in," Millington said.

"Key attributes that'll help us are his ability to nip in, intercept, regain possession and play forward immediately, so he'll get us on the front-foot straight away.

"And then when we drop teams low he's got that little creative element and the technical ability to find a pass that will get us in-behind oppositions.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"That's his first 90 minutes in a long while, so you can imagine what he'll be like when he's got four or five 90 minutes' under his belt, he'll be a player really looking to impose himself on matches."

The Town boss said there will be no more than three further signings, but he hopes no less than two new additions will arrive between now and the start of the season.

"Negotiations are going on," said Millington, who hopes a new centre-back could potentially be signed in the next few days, "and then I'd hope by the start of the season, at least another one, maybe another two (new signings)."

On whether he expected there to be any outgoings, Millington said: "No, not at the moment, everybody is fighting for a start against Bromley.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"What I can say is that some are ahead of others in terms of minutes, in terms if where they're at with their pre-season preparations because they hit the ground running earlier.

"So I feel like we're in a strong place squad-wise at the moment."

Asked whether he knew his starting 11 for the opening game of the season against Bromley in two weeks' time, the Town boss said: "There are the obvious players who, so far, have figured more in pre-season, they're that bit sharper and that bit more ahead than others.

"To give one example, Jamie Stott played exceptionally well today over two positions, left of a back three and in the middle, he's been really consistent in what he's done for us today and clearly, he would be a front-runner for one of those positions against Bromley.

"But that's not to say somebody else couldn't dislodge him in the next couple of pre-season games."

Related topics: