DANNY Hussey is adamant that Spalding United’s 5-0 friendly beating at Bedford Town is nothing to worry about.
Hot on the heels of a 3-0 home defeat by Wisbech Town, the much-fancied Tulips were handed another eye-catching reverse by a team two steps higher than them in the Non-League ladder.
Strikes from Josh Beech (25), Gareth Price (32), Callum Lewis (52), Mark Leigh (65) and Jermaine Ivy (89) did the damage for physical Bedford – but player/coach Hussey was keen to take the positives.
“To be fair they’re a very good side,” said the experienced defender. “In spells, we outplayed them and had our moments, but their finishing was the difference.
“They were the fitter side and much more physical. We only really played in fits and spurts – but I wouldn’t say there is any cause for concern. Of course we need to improve, but there are no alarm bells ringing.
“We were without a few key players, but should be back to full strength against Louth.”
Perhaps the biggest positive for Spalding was the second-half appearance of striker Shane Tolley.
Hussey described the ex-St Neots striker’s showing as “very impressive” on his return from injury.
Striker Ben Good was also handed a trial, with Francis Green and Callum Earls among those to be unavailable.
Midfielder Matt Oswin could feature in tonight’s home clash with Louth (7.45pm) after joining on trial, while Hussey expects boss Pat Rayment to bring in a few new faces before the UCL Premier Division season gets under way in August.
There was no such trouble for Deeping Rangers, who followed up Thursday night’s 5-0 thumping of Boston United Reserves with a 3-1 triumph at Ely.
Johnny Hands, Chris Logan, Kev Brader, Tom Waumsley and Matt Heron accounted for the Pilgrims’ second string at Outgang Road, while debutante Michael Byrne (2) – signed from champions Long Buckby – and Adam Weston notched at Ely.
Player/boss Tuncay Korkmaz said: “Ely are always a decent side, so it was nice to beat them. I never read too much into pre-season, but it’s a case of so far, so good.
“It was good to see Byrne among the goals. With Josh Moreman going we needed to bring goals into the team – and he’s a guy that always seems to score plenty. We’re delighted to have him signed.”
The fixtures are coming thick and fast for Korkmaz’s charges, who welcome Godmanchester tonight (7.45pm).
Elsewhere, new signing Lee Orrey netted the opener for Pinchbeck United at Boston Town, but they eventually came unstuck 2-1.
Tom Ruck levelled for the Poachers – who are managed by ex-Pinchbeck double winners Ian Dunn and Matt Hocking – before former Spalding striker Josh Ford fired the winner.
Ford, deemed surplus to requirements at the Sir Halley Stewart Playing Field, has notched on three successive games for Boston.
Holbeach United visit Wisbech Town in the pick of this week’s friendly matches on Thursday night (7.45pm).