Stuart Jones hails ‘massive performance’ from Ashton & Backwell

Ashton and Banwell after the Weston game which finished 3-2 to the visitors

Ashton and Banwell after the Weston game which finished 3-2 to the visitors - Credit: Archant

Stuart Jones says Saturday’s game with Weston was a “massive positive” despite seeing his side fall to a 3-2 defeat at the Lancer Scott Stadium.

Ashton were taking part in their second pre-season game of the campaign after their 4-1 defeat to Mendip Broadwalk and, despite suffering their second consecutive defeat, Jones was pleased with his side's performance.

"For us, it's a massive positive. We played against a team that are a few divisions higher and their quality shows that," he said.

"I think we ran them quite close. Our fitness was good, we showed a lot of quality and overall I'm encouraged for the upcoming season.

"Weston have done us a massive favour coming.

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"I would like to thank Mark McKeever, Scott Bartlett and the board. They have done us a massive favour in giving us a competitive game and we've got a little bit of attendance and something for everybody to talk about.

"They've got quality, they are going to go quite well and I wish them all the best."

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With Sol Shearer scoring on his return to the squad, Jones says it was good to have him back.

"Very happy with Sol," he added, after Shearer left last year to play for Brislington.

"What Sol doesn't give you going one way, he definitely gives you the other, he's got a lot of quality

"Sol's got to look after his body and be a little more selfish when he's at home in terms of doing his gym work, his core work and his strength exercises, but Sol is going to be a plus for us this year."

The Stags are hoping to bring in two new players in Charlie Rich, who has played for Mangotsfield United and Paulton Rovers, and Jordan Yeo from Frome.

"We've got two more we are speaking to," added Jones.

"We've got two injured (on Saturday), with the other two that come in that makes us very competitive which is good."

After finishing in fourth place in Toolstation Western League Division One last season, Jones is clear about what his aims and goals are for the new season.

"Every year we want to improve on last year. I think if we finish a place above last year or a better points total than last year then that will be a progression for me," he added.

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