Barrow Raiders ready for Oldham – Match Preview
EVERY fit player in the Barrow Raiders squad will get a chance to prove themselves against Championship opposition Oldham at Craven Park on Sunday, January 15 (kick-off 2pm).
Coach Paul Crarey is keen to see how his team perform in the second of the club’s pre-season friendlies and is looking to see his players prove themselves worthy of selection when the iPro Sport Cup beings next month and League One in March.
Barrow steamrollered Barrow and District Select 92-4 in their last outing, however the Roughyeds will provide much stiffer opposition.
It’s a test Crarey is relishing ahead of what is hoped will be a massive promotion campaign.
Hooker Nathan Mossop along with Max Wiper and Martin Aspinwall miss the Oldham clash as they recover from injury, but fans will be able to have another look at Barrow’s major close season signings.
There will also be a run-out for Millom forward Ethan Kelly, who beings a one-month stint on trial at the club.
Crarey wants to see his players start in the right manner and he said: “It is always a test against Oldham, they are a very physical side and they test you around the rucks which is good for us as it gives us something to focus on.”
Barrow have been preparing well in training looking at defensive and attacking structures ahead of the clash.
He is expecting to come up against a well-drilled side coached by Scott Naylor, and he added: “They always give you a tough test, but that’s why we wanted to play them. We need to be on our guard to combat how they play – it’s a test for the lads across the board really.
“We will try and play as many players as we can this week. We are going to put everybody out there and have a go. It is up to the lads to show whether they are worth a starting place come February when the competition starts.”
Crarey added: “Ethan Kelly is on a four-week block to see how he runs in the pro game. He will retain his amateur status but we want to give him a taste of professional rugby.
Exciting teenage prospect Ryan Johnston is set to have a lengthy spell on the field and fans could see something special from the former Dalton player.
The 18-year-old has been in brilliant form for academy outfit Furness Raiders and is held in high regard by the Barrow coaching staff.
Crarey said: “We want to start the game like we finished last year, we played really well at the back end of the season.
“We want to become more consistent, start well in games, match teams physically. We want to stay in the full 80 with Oldham and be in the mix at the end of the game.
Crarey is calling for the fans to back the side and is hoping to see a good turnout in what should be a cracking encounter.
Admission for adults is £10, concessions £7, and children £3.