Cottesmore ready to fight fire with fire

Cottesmore Amateurs v Uppingham Town pre-season friendly. Photo: John Evely EMN-140608-095413001
Cottesmore Amateurs v Uppingham Town pre-season friendly. Photo: John Evely EMN-140608-095413001

Cottesmore Amateurs manager Neil Miller was full of fighting talk ahead of his side’s opening match in the Leicestershire Senior Premier Division on Saturday.

After strengthening the squad and with a good pre-season under their belt Miller believes his side are ready for Desford.

Cottesmore beat local rivals Uppingham 2-0 on Wednesday last week in a preseason game.

Miller said: “ I am optimistic. I am really excited about the season and I am really excited about what we can do.

“We know what lies ahead for us and maybe Desford don’t know so much about us. Hopefully we will spring a surprise on them.

“Our issue was last season we scored the least amount of goals in that league, even less than the teams at the bottom. We didn’t concede many but we didn’t score many either.

“We need to turn draws into wins and loses into draws.”

Cottesmore’s main target at the front of their three man attack will be new signing Rob Aldridge, he will be supported by one of the club’s most improved talents, Andre Fontoura.

Fontoura scored Cottesmore’s only goal in a 3-1 loss to Billesborough on Saturday, when manager Miller played with his system to give the defence and goalkeeper a work out before the start of the league season.

Miller said: “Fontoura has had a really good pre-season. He has lots of pace and really good quick feet. He also has a tenancy to do a little too much. He would beat a player and then slow down and look to beat them again.

“It didn’t work for him last year and he drifted in and out of the first team. But he has listened to what I have told him and put it into practice on the pitch.”

Miller came into the job midway into the season last year and was unable to fully put his mark on the team but he is looking forward to playing the side he has helped build during the off season.

Miller said: “Managerially I am looking to shake off some negativity. Last season when we were playing league high fliers I would set us out 4-5-1 to try and stop them but this season we are going to play 4-3-3.

“I have now got the squad that I want and we now can almost fight fire with fire and we are going to give it our best shot in each game,

“If that means we are going to get a knock back occasionally so be it.

“For too many years we have been the whipping boys of this league and that is not going to be the case this year.”

Cottesmore’s first league game is away at Desford, kick off 3pm.