Yeovil Town manager Darren Sarll admits that the club are a summer's length behind in terms of their preparation for the 2019-20 season. The Glovers had a slow start to their 2019 summer, with the former Stevenage manager only appointed on June 19th, over two-and-a-half months after his main predecessor Darren Way left the building. So far, the club have brought in six summer signings, but are still very short in numbers, and that showed up during Tuesday night's 1-6 defeat against Swansea City when they were overrun by their Championship opponents.
Sarll said after the game that he had put 'five or six contractual offers' out to unnamed players that he hoped would join his squad, but admitted that at present they were 'spinning plates' that might or might not fall in his direction. He told BBC Somerset that in an ideal world that those bids would have gone out much earlier, citing central midfield and a striker as two obvious areas where the club needed to recruit:
"We are a summer behind. Let's be nice and factual here, and objective. I came in here two days before pre-season started. We are a summer behind in our recruitment. Come the season starting, that can't be an excuse. But obviously it's a work in progress. We are so light in midfield. I feel like every time we get the ball into the defensive unit we haven't got a pass into midfield without Matt Worthington being available, or some support for Worthington. So I feel we're a little bit slight there and we really need someone to go and partner Rhys Murphy and drive the team forward from the top end. So two really crucial areas. But if it means that we have to have experiences like tonight to make sure we have the right player before the season starts, let's have three more of these and get the right player, because the right player will be the difference for the next ten months."
Despite the magnitude of the scoreline, and the gulf between the two sides, Sarll added that he'd rather have that shellshock moment of losing a match by a large scoreline during the pre-season stages, than hit that problem during the eight game period the club has to face during August when they open their 2019-20 National League station:
"I'd rather see my lot exposed now, than after eight games in August and think wow we've got massive holes here, here and here - why didn't we see that in pre-season? So it was good tonight, and I was really delighted with the support. I was really delighted with the turnout, to have 1,300 here for a pre-season game. That's some achievement from our supporters and hopefully they can pick up that momentum. They shouldn't be disheartened by tonight, because we get nothing less for losing it, and we'd get nothing more if we'd won it."
The Glovers boss said that whatever happened in the pre-season friendly schedule, that the main focus still had to be on the August 3rd trip to Barnet at the Hive Stadium. He said the target therefore had to remain there, rather than what problems they may currently be facing during mid-July:
"I think we can all forgive anyone in any shape or form, if on August 3rd we're the best prepared that we can be and if we go and beat Barnet. That's the whole aim of the whole six week period. I think that it's important. The only real sort of disappointment for me tonight was the two goals from set plays. In the first half, I just thought like you get with so many of these games, we were a little bit too respectful. I want to get close to people and lay a glove on them, and not get inside their range and let them have the first three shots. So I thought that was a little bit disappointing and I said that to them at half time. But there was no ranting and raving, as there's no need to. The whole process is about building and reconstructing this football club, so that on August 3rd we're ready."
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