MATCH REACTION: KEVIN HILL ON EXETER CITY AND PRE-SEASON

Exmouth Town manager Kevin Hill reflected on Town’s 3-1 defeat to Exeter City and on preparations for the upcoming 23/24 season.

Town put up a really strong effort against a youthful Exeter City side in front of 959 people at the Circle of Care Community Stadium, but Harvey Dorathy’s equaliser to Sonny Cox’s first half strike was cancelled out by Mitch Beardmore and Harrison King.

“I knew they were going to have a lot of the ball, and it was just about getting more minutes into my guy’s legs.

It was a fitness test, them lads were going to keep going all day long, and we’ve got to be switched on at all times.

I got what I wanted out of the game, which was hard work, my boys had a good run around and put in a good shift, but what I want them to learn is how we need to be off the ball, talking off the ball, keeping the shape, and that’s what happens when you are tired, a lot of talking saves a lot of running”

That brings Exmouth’s pre-season to an end, but Hill expects there to be absences from the squad for the opening of the season.

However, the manager was delighted that all of the 22/23 squad has signed up for the season. 

“It’s the beginning of the season now, the season starts for us with the FA Cup, but it’s also holiday season, where they’ve broken up from school, and it’s the only time they can go away with their kids and family, so I think the first four/five games will be disjointed with people away, coming back, until everyone comes back which will hopefully be in the middle of September.

It’s brilliant that everyone wanted to stay, I didn’t really have to fight hard to keep any of them.

They work hard for me, we know what they are about, and they know what I am about, they do give everything when they go out there. 

People want to stay and fight for their spot, and it just shows the atmosphere in the dressing room.”

Exmouth’s season starts on Saturday at Bickland Park, as they take on Falmouth Town in the FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round. 

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