Witton Albion manager Brian Pritchard promises improvement following friendly success at Runcorn Linnets

Northwich Guardian: Witton Albion manager Brian Pritchard Witton Albion manager Brian Pritchard

BRIAN Pritchard says he believes there is plenty of potential to improve after watching Witton win their first pre-season friendly at Runcon Linnets on Tuesday.

Albion twice came from behind against the North West Counties League outfit before new recruit Michael Koral, brought on as a substitute after the interval, claimed the contest’s decisive goal with 10 minutes left.

Danny Andrews, from the penalty spot, and Scott Bakkor were on target in the first half.

“These initial games are about setting high standards,” said Pritchard.

“The players know what is expected of them, and where I think they should be at this stage of our preparation.

“I felt we dipped below that in the first half, though I was encouraged by what I saw later in the game.

“We moved the ball well when not attempting to by-pass midfield, which happened too often earlier on.

“It’s important to remember though that Runcorn’s season starts a fortnight before our own, so they’ve been back in training earlier than we have.

“They’ve also already played a couple of games, and looked sharper.

“However that’s exactly why as a I manager I pick that sort of opposition at this stage of our pre-season.”

Kyle Hamid’s powerful header beat Witton goalkeeper Chris Sanna in the sixth minute, though the visitors to Millbank Linnets Stadium restored parity when Scott Bakkor lobbed custodian Richie Mottram at the opposite end after his former Clitheroe teammate had fluffed an attempted clearance.

Mark Houghton’s clipped finish made it 2-1, only for Andrews to convert from the spot on 39 minutes.

Pritchard had replaced every player that started the game by the 70-minute mark and one of those replacements, ex-Congleton front man Koral, finished precisely from an acute angle after another error by Runcorn net-minder Mottram.

Witton host Football Conference outfit AFC Telford United, new home to last season's joint leading goalscorer Josh Hancock, this Saturday, kick off 3pm.

Match details supplied by Phil Chadwick.

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