Fleetwood Town’s countdown to the new season has begun - and keeper Scott Davies can’t wait to be a part of it.
The 26-year-old is all set to begin his fourth Highbury campaign and insists Fleetwood come back from the summer break stronger and better prepared for an assault on the League Two title.
Town boss Graham Alexander has brought in eight new faces since May – a fresh start for Fleetwood insists Davies. He said: “I’m not going to be disrespectful to anyone who has left the club.
“The manager has decided to go a certain way and bring in a certain type of player, and I think what he has done can only improve us as a team.
“I’m in no doubt that we now have a stronger squad.
“We took 22 players out to Austria and I think that had there been any injuries, if someone had been forced to pull out, you could have replaced them with a player of equal ability.
“Everyone is working hard. They are dedicated to the task at hand.”
And Davies doesn’t set any stall in Friday’s pre-season defeat at the hands of German side SV Wacker Burghausen.
“German football is buzzing at the moment,” he said. “We knew we were playing a side who were better than us on paper. But we played exceptionally well and were probably unlucky not to score a couple of goals.
“In the game before that, we were playing weaker opponents (Town beat Austrian side Bad Ischl 8-0 ) but the lads still gave it everything.
“In that situation, you can either coast through and win or put yourself to it and come out with a really convincing score – that’s what we did.”
During Town’s week in the Austrian Alps, Alexander secured the signature of former Manchester City and Burnley defender Stephen Jordan.
He, along with former Stevenage skipper Mark Roberts, completes the Fleetwood defensive jigsaw, to the delight of Davies, who added: “I think at the back end of last season it was clear to everyone that we conceded too many cheap goals. The lads who have come in can hopefully change that. We’ve lacked a leader and Mark certainly brings that.
“Stephen has played at the very highest level and he will bring that experience, besides giving the other lads someone to bounce off.
“They are both going to have big parts to play.”
With the big kick-off against Dagenham and Redbridge just 18 days away, Davies is getting excited.
“The countdown is on,” he said. “We know now we’ve got to step up the work to make sure we are ready.”
And that starts on Saturday, with the visit of Preston North End to Highbury for Nathan Pond’s testimonial.
“What we want now is a real test,” said Davies. “It’s no good at this stage playing sides you know you’re going to beat.
“It should be a great day and hopefully Pondy will get the accolades he deserves.
“Preston will want to bring a strong squad – there would be no point playing the game if they didn’t.
“But I think we can beat them, no matter what team they put out.”