08:30PM, Friday 28 May 2021
Marlow boss Mark Bartley expects there to be movement in and out of the club in the coming weeks, after completing a series of friendly matches with a convincing 2-0 win over the FFDTV Academy.
The Blues players have been back in training for the past six weeks and, after playing a series of friendlies will now rest up before their return for pre-season training on June 22.
On Saturday they saw off the youthful endeavour of the academy side and before that they defeated Reading City and Ardley, keeping clean sheets in all four matches they’ve played.
“We played Reading City first and beat them 2-0 and 3-0,” said Bartley. “Then we played Ardley who are in the Hellenic League and we beat them 6-0 last week.
“Then, most recently we’ve played FFDTV and beat them 2-0. These players are 19, 20, 21 and some of them are at the level where they’re playing at steps 3 to 5. We’ve had conversations about having a look at them for a while, so, I thought it would be a good idea to have a game against them. We’ve played three sides, albeit not against anyone that is at our level. But just to get the players back, and through some minutes. We’ll never sniff at the three clean sheets either. We’ll take that.”
Bartley is currently in the process pulling together his squad for next season and said he expects there to be ‘a bit of movement in the coming weeks’.
He said: “We’re in conversations with all of the squad from last year.
“There’s a few new individuals as well that we want to have a chat with.
“We’re scheduling those in, and those talks are ongoing.
“I think this preseason is going to be a little bit more difficult than others because it’s just prolonged.
“There are definitely a couple of players we’re keeping our eyes on. I think there will definitely be a bit of movement in the coming weeks.”
The Blues will continue to play in the Isthmian League South Central Division next season following an FA restructure, but Bartley says the new additions to the league – along with the strength of those teams already in it – make it ‘the toughest division he’s ever seen at step 4’.
“We’re in the Isthmian League this season, and it’s about as tough as I’ve seen Step 4,” he said. “Certainly, one I’ve been in, when I look at some of the teams that are in there. It’s a really difficult league.
“We’ve got the best of what our division was last year. You’ve got Bracknell in there, you’ve got Chertsey, Hanwell, Tooting and Mitcham – you’ve got those sorts of sides.”