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All set For East Fife Opener


12:23 10th July 2013

Jackett ready for pre-season opener


All 20 outfield players will get 45 minutes each as Wolves kick off the Kenny Jackett era in their first pre-season friendly at East Fife tonight (7.30pm).

Carl Ikeme and Aaron McCarey will share goalkeeping duties at Bayview Stadium, with Wayne Hennessey taking a watching brief as he continues training following his absence with injury.

Tongo Doumbia and Leigh Griffiths, who started their proper pre-season with the squad on Monday, will be among those involved.

“Everyone will play 45 minutes barring Wayne, who is having a training week,” Head Coach Jackett explained.

“Wayne is here and he can do all of the training but for the other 22, it’s about training and playing tonight and Saturday as well.

“Twenty-two players will play 45 minutes each.

“They’re a Scottish Second Division team and I’m sure they will be looking to impress and get on with their own season.

“But my concentration will be on my own team and how my own team performs.

“We saw two players introduced to the group yesterday in Griffiths and Doumbia and it was interesting to see them train.

“The two new guys coming in will work hard during the sessions and in the football to see what everyone can bring.

“Within that, you can move things around slightly and use your variable players so you capitalise on every strength to see what everyone can bring then after that, by the start of the season, make sure it settles into a winning formation.”

Jackett is keeping an open mind on Doumbia for next season, saying he will be assessed like all the squad during pre-season.

“I haven’t really spoke to him yet apart from ask him where he would like to play positionally,” said Jackett.

“As we all know, he’s putting himself down as an attacking midfield player and he will get 45 minutes tonight, so it will be interesting to see how he plays and how he does.

“I will talk to him along the way, but right now, he’s our player.

“He has some power and size and he has a shot on him too so it will be interesting for all of us to see how he develops in his second season here.

“Is it a possibility that you can put one year down to learning and then really come on in your second?

“That’s the challenge for quite a number of these players.”

Eggert Jonsson, Michael Ihiekwe and Ethan Ebanks-Landell just missed out on making the trip to Scotland with Jackett keen to take 20 outfield players to ensure they all got decent game time.

But Jackett is not ruling anyone out of his plans.

“Those players who didn’t make it are on the fringes and they have to keep working hard to try and get into this group,” he added.

Elsewhere Jackett reported no fresh interest in Bakary Sako or the quartet back at home who have been made available for transfer.

Kevin Doyle is now not expected to join the Scotland trip due to a continuing groin injury, which is not deemed to be serious.

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