An encouraging start to pre-season, here is my opinion of how well each player did in todays win over Chorley in a slightly different format to usual due to the eleven changes made at half time.
Ben Alnwick / Mark Howard - 7
Both keepers showed their experience of playing at a higher level in terms of their composure in their handling, distribution, shot stopping and kicking. Despite Alnwick conceding two in the first half, neither of the goals were his fault and both keepers’ performances were relatively solid, therefore I’ll give them a 7 each.
Mark Little / Stephen Darby - 7
Again, both players showed their composure at full back and rarely put a foot wrong. Despite Little being slightly off the pace in the first half, I’ll blame the usual rustiness of first pre season games for that. Darby didn't put a foot wrong when he came on, but also acted as a steady eddie as we tended to be attacking for most of the second half, another 7.
Wheater / Dervite - 8
Both solid as ever. Wheater was tested occasionally in the first half, one of which lead to a goal, but overall, another solid partnership from 2 out of last seasons regular back three. It’s an 8 from me, well done lads.
Brockbank / Beevers - 9
Easily the best set of performances across the pitch from these boys. Beevers just did what Beevers usually does whilst Brockbank hugely impressed me and bagged a brace. There’s huge promise in him to be the next Rob Holding. An excellent partnership, its a 9.
A.Taylor / Lonsdale - 7
Andy Taylor, as consistent as ever and didn't put a foot wrong, however, the overall rating is dragged down slightly by the early error from Lonsdale which lead to the opening Chorley goal. Having struggled to regain his confidence before the half was up despite his best efforts, its a 7.
Buckley / King - 7
Both of these players were making their debut’s today and did their best to show what they had, yet struggled to be as effective as they might have liked to have been. The first half pairing of wingers wasn't quite what was needed in order to put in Alfie and Madine and couldn't fully give what I still believe each of them has to offer. King did well to handle the nasty off-the-ball situation just before half time and I have to give him credit for that, particularly on his first experience of first team level football, it’s another 7.
Karacan / Perry - 8
The central midfield pairing in the first half also impressed me. Neither of which put a foot wrong and played some really good balls, showed real composure and worked well together in the middle of the park. 8/10.
Pratley / Vela - 7
Having joined the action in a half where the team performance gradually improved, Partly and Vela did well in occupying the midfield, very little got past them and they again, worked well together. Pratley looked slightly off the pace and went down easily for a few fouls, but I’ll let him off, seven.
Taylor / Hall - 8
The second half pairing which created all three goals. The two wingers made the attacks happen in the second forty five, Hall’s quick feet frightened the Chorley back line in the second half whilst Taylor’s contributions to the run’s, through balls and overall shape of the midifield was unfaultable, his free-kick’s weren't bad either, 8/10.
ALF / Madine - 7
The regular strike partnership didn't seem to be firing on all cylinders today, again forgivable given the time of the season. We could've really done with a Le Fondre goal to set him off, the quicker the better whilst Madine wasn't given any room at all by the Chorley defence having identified him as our target man. Another 7.
White / Trialist - 8
Arguably the most influential pairing of the game as the substitutes brought the game to life and one of which even had their name on the scoresheet. Trialist Haris Tabakovic offered height and brought the ball down excellently and helped hold up the play when necessary whilst White’s pace was the biggest asset to the team in the second half. An excellent finish also made him my man of the match for the game. Definitely one to watch out for in the future, 8/10.