Browne boosted as Blues pair sign up

Wednesday 12th July 2017

PORTLAND United boss Simon Browne has re-signed two Blues players for the coming season ahead of the club’s first pre-season game against Balti Sports this weekend.

Striker Ryan McKechnie and defender Sam Buckler will again be a part of the islanders’ set-up next season and Browne admitted he was relieved to secure McKechnie’s signature after an “administration error”.

He told Echosport: “It’s more of an administration error than anything. I spoke to Robin (Satherley, chairman) at the start of my tenure and he said seven or eight players had already committed.

“Ryan said he was committed but said he hadn’t signed a form. It was a case of dotting the Is and crossing the Ts. He was a good part of what the club did last year so I’m glad that it’s all signed.”

And Browne also revealed that Buckler had been on his “radar” ever since his time at Wimborne Town.

“With Sam, he had a period out with his broken leg. Hopefully this year with a good pre-season under his belt he’ll come back on a good level and hit the ground running.

“He’s been on my radar since I was at Wimborne so it’s good to get him on board. Obviously Ross (Carmichael) has gone up to Dorchester so there’s an opportunity for the likes of Sam at centre-half,” Browne said.

The Blues have been training with three triallists in the shape of former United players Shane Evans and Richard Marshallsay, while young goalkeeper Jordan Tewkesbury, who worked with Browne at Wimborne, is also under observation.

Portland play their opening pre-season friendly against Balti Sports at Thomas Hardye’s 3G pitch on Saturday (3pm), and Browne will be looking for “the right attitude” from his players.

He said: “Pre-season games are, for me, just about getting people out on the pitch and making an assessment of the players. When they start handing out points for pre-season games I’ll take the results a little bit more seriously.

“I want to see good attitudes and decent skills from the players.

“They’ve got to impress the new manager. While I know a bit about most of them, I don’t know what they’re going to give me.

“Hopefully they’ll turn up with the right attitude.”


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