Edwards taking positives ahead of Villarreal test

Wolves under-23s will bring their pre-season training camp in Spain to a close on Sunday afternoon with a friendly against Villarreal B.

It will be the second friendly test for Rob Edwards’ side during their ten days in Spain following Thursday’s 1-0 defeat to Real Murcia B, but despite the result, the head coach is taking the positives from his players getting minutes under their belts ahead of a busy season.

On Real Murcia challenge

“Of course, it was not the result that we would have wanted out of the game, but the result of a game is not the most important thing in pre-season. Murcia were a good side with some talented young players who made it tough for us.

“Obviously, you don’t go into any game not wanting to win, but it was always going to be a challenge with the mix and match side that we have at the moment, with some of our players off in China and we were playing trialists, so we weren’t going to be at the full flow that we showed last season.

“But I felt that the game served its purpose as everyone got some minutes in their legs, everyone came out of the game unscathed and that’s the main thing. At this time of the year it’s all about preparing as well as you can for the season ahead.”

On rotating his squad ahead of Villarreal clash

“All the players got at least 30 minutes against Murcia – some played 60, while a couple played the full 90.

“We have another game coming up against Villarreal B on Sunday and we will change the team again for that one, so some of the lads who played 30 minutes will play 60 and vice versa. Some players may have to play the full 90, but that’s something we’re prepared for.

“Villarreal will be another big test for us, but the players have been training hard. They were in the pool on Friday morning and had the afternoon off to rest and recover, but they were back in training again yesterday to prepare for the game this afternoon.”

On pre-season preparations

“We’re already ahead of where we were last season, and in a much better state, so everything is positive here at the moment.

“After the game, we’ll be flying back to Manchester on Monday morning with the players having a day off on Tuesday.

“We’ll do a bit of training on Wednesday morning ahead of the squad splitting in half, with some going to Kidderminster to face the Harriers and the other half going to Hereford.

“After that the under-18s are heading out to China, while we have two more pre-season games against Swansea and Celtic – there’s no rest for the wicked!

“There’s lots of games to go and lots to prepare for as we are joined by the players who have been out with the first-team in China. There’s still lots to be looking forwards to before the season begins.”

Under-23s' pre-season schedule

W 2-1 | Saturday 6th July, 1pm | AFC Wulfrunians (A)

W 6-1 | Wednesday 10th July, 7.30pm | Hednesford Town (A)

L 1-0 | Thursday 18th July, 6pm | Real Murcia B (A)

Sunday 21st July, 6pm | Villarreal CF B (A)

Wednesday 24th July, 7.45pm | Hereford United (A)

Wednesday 24th July, 7.45pm | Kidderminster Harriers (A)

Monday 29th July, 4pm | Swansea City (A)

Wednesday 31st July, TBC | Celtic (A)

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