Setting The Scene
Gateshead are back in action for the first time ahead of the 2019/20 season on Wednesday, as Championship side Middlesbrough visit the International Stadium.
The signing of Scott Barrow on Monday afternoon took the Heed’s squad up to 11, and made him the sixth player from last season’s squad to return after Mike Williamson, Greg Olley, Connor Thomson, JJ O’Donnell, Elliot Forbes.
Jordan Preston, Connor Oliver, Alex Nicholson, Toby Lees and Liam Agnew have also signed on for the 2019/20 season, while the rest of the squad will be made up by a number of trialists.
Middlesbrough’s pre-season preparations are already well underway with the club seeing their first friendly against Austrian outfit Grazer AK end in a 2-0 defeat.
Former Gateshead loanees Aynsley Pears and Luke Armstrong were both involved for Boro, and could make an appearance on their return to the International Stadium on Wednesday.
There will be a number of trialists involved in the Gateshead squad with no expected absentees from the pool of contracted players.
What We’re Saying
“It’s been a really positive period over the last week, we’ve had a lot of good signings come through the door as well as being good characters,” player-manager Mike Williamson told gateshead-fc.com.
“We’ve got a couple of ideas that we’ll be looking at over the course of pre-season in terms of tactics, but generally we’ve got an idea of a philosophy and how we want to play based on the players coming in.
“We want to test ourselves against the best players we can and Middlesbrough of course will be physically strong and fit whatever team they bring as a Championship side.”
What They’re Saying
Speaking to Middlesbrough’s official website following their 2-0 defeat to Grazer AK, manager Jonathan Woodgate said: “We’ve been working now ten days, seven with the football.
“The lads have worked really hard all week, and [Grazer] are fresh coming into it off the back end of their season.
“I’ve got no complaints. We’re playing the way we want to play, and that won’t be changing. We’re sticking to our plan, and the more we practise the better we’ll be – and the players realise that.”
Tickets can be purchased on the gate and are priced as follows:
Under-12s: FREE with a paying adult