Football: Good show, Stefan; Local non-league cluibs prepare for the new campaign.
NUNEATON TOWN looked to have unearthed a real gem in Stefen McGrath, who put in an eye-catching performance in the 2-0 home defeat against Burton Albion that put a rare smile on the face of manager Kevin Wilkin.
McGrath, who came to Liberty Way during the summer following a spell at Racing Club Warwick last term, has been showing signs of improvement but he lifted the barriers somewhat as he tormented the Brewers' LEAMINGTON manager Jason back division that had Wilkin crowing.
"That was very much the best individual display by any player at this club in preseason," said the Boro boss.
"Stefen was outstanding. I cannot tell you how many times he went past the Burton full-back down the left and got in some great and telling crosses.
"I admit we didn't take advantage but that was as good a show of wing play I've seen from a Nuneaton player for quite a while.
"Hopefully, Stefen can build on that. He was quick, incisive and the quality of his centres were what strikers pray for. Yes, we didn't take advantage, mainly through bad luck and Burton's desperate defending."
And while McGrath - the son of the former Coventry City midfielder and FA Cup winner of 1987, Lloyd McGrath - was making his push for a place in Boro's BGB Southern Midlands starting line-up against Leighton Town in just over a fortnight's time, there were several others putting down a good case.
Teenager Eddie Nisevic has come through the youth ranks and although his appearances in friendlies have been limited, the youngster continues to show promise and he is definitely figuring in Wilkin's plans, as is the lanky Levi Ramsay.
Boro were missing experienced Martin Reeves and Guy Hadland against Burton but both are expected to return to the side for Saturday's visit to neighbours Hinckley United where other teenagers Gareth Dean, James Armson, Alex Dean and Danny Edmond will again be given further chance to enhance their prospects at the club.
"These lads need time to get accustomed to playing at this level and maybe that's something we don't have too much of," added Wilkin.
"However, I'm pleased with the way they are developing and progressing. They have a big part to play and the more pitch time they get the better but I'm not going to burn them out. I have to be patient if we are to get the best out of these kids."
SHOWING PROMISE...Nuneaton front runner Levi Ramsey tests the Stratford defence during last Saturday's win. Picture by Joe Bailey; PLEASED... Kevin Wilkin
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|Publication:||Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)|
|Date:||Jul 31, 2008|
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