Fleetwood Town first team coach Barry Nicholson says the next six weeks are about ensuring the players are in prime condition to make a good start at Peterborough on August 3.
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The senior squad report back for pre-season training today and Nicholson has just returned from Italy as he continues to work towards his UEFA pro-licence with the Scottish FA.
Conor McAleny, Kyle Dempsey and Gethin Jones are expected to return to training after ending last season on loan at Kilmarnock, Peterborough and Mansfield.
Ross Wallace’s future is still up in the air, with the midfielder yet to agree contract extension. Ashley Nadesan turned down a new deal to join League Two side Crawley Town, while James Wallace, Ryan Taylor, Joe Maguire and Paul Jones also left Fleetwood this summer.
Town have two familiar ‘new’ faces at Poolfoot. Winger Josh Morris and defender Danny Andrew rejoined the club last week from Scunthorpe and Doncaster respectively.
Nicholson says the next few weeks could be key to Town’s 2019-20 campaign as they bid to build on an 11th-placed finish.
He said: “The days are gone of turning up (for pre-season) and just running the lads hard. You have to plan as much as you can in advance.
“We have done most of the planning at the back end of last season. We knew what we were doing. We have tweaked a few things that we were doing last season.
“All the coaching staff have been in for a good few days, making sure we are ready and making sure we are right.
“The plan is in place for the next five or six weeks, so that we are ready for the first league game of the season.
“We need to make sure the lads go out, hit the ground running and get off to a good start.”
Nottingham Forest fan and Fleetwood Town forward Ash Hunter is relishing the opportunity to make a dream come true as he prepares to play against his boyhood club in the Carabao Cup.
The Championship club will host Joey Barton’s side in the first round, and ex-Derby and Burton Albion youth product Hunter tweeted: “Stuff dreams are made of”.