Richard Bates re-joins us after a brief stint with Doncaster Rovers where he was able to gain valuable skills for training and game day techniques that will translate to a fast start for the Senior levels of CCFC this season.
Thanks, It’s good to be back.
So we have seen you as a player, a coach, a player-coach … what will we see this year? Is there a chance you will also double up as one of the goal posts?
Haha no…. Unfortunately I will just be coaching this year and maybe put the boots back on for our newly formed thirds team on Sundays.
You spent some time with Doncaster Rovers in State 1, learning from former CCFC coach George Moutafis, what are you bringing back with you to get the club ready this year?
Yes it was a good experience coaching up at Doncaster Rovers in State 1. I’d probably say the main thing I am looking to bring to the club this year a more professional way of preparing for training and a game.
What do you want to see at the end of the season for CCFC?
Hopefully a successful season with us winning the league and being promoted, a goal shared by everyone at the club across the board.
With a month of pre-season under your belt, how are you feeling about the lads that have returned and the latest additions?
Pre -season has been really good and I am very pleased with how it’s been going.
With the help of reserves team manager Ross Evans and senior team manager Drew Dickson and other senior committee members, pre-season which is normally a stressful time, has been plane sailing so far A lot of the lads from last year have remained at the club as they all want to make up for missing out on promotion. A lot of new players have also joined the ranks this year, there seems to be stiff competition throughout both squads.
Our CCFC youth teams are massive this year, can we expect to see some of the youngsters breaking through?
Hopefully... we already have a few young lads in the squad this year who have come up through the youth ranks and look right at home playing alongside all the senior players. This is credit to the coaches of our youth system.
What style of football are you looking to play this season? Are you going to stick hard and fast to your style or are you going to adapt to the opponent?
Each opponent will ask us a new question so if we have to adapt our style then I’ll do my very best to make sure the boys know their roles in any game plan. Ideally we want to be in a position that our opponents have to adapt to try and contain us.
We had Charlie Buse a few years back tie for the Golden Boot with Danny Allsopp while you were in charge, is that goal count something we can expect again?
Yes, Charlie was an important player for us a few years ago, but hopefully with the return of Dan Quinn and Samuel Au plus new recruit Jake Buckley the goals will be flowing once more.
With your first pre-season game under your belt, how are you feeling? Wasn’t the result we wanted, but what did you take away from it all?
Results in pre-season don't really bother me, I'd rather focus on our performance as a team and after our first games I'm extremely happy. It was a good run out for the boys on what was a very hot day against Point Cook. There were some good individual performances and a very good team performance by the lads, especially by the new boys who have integrated very well. Even from our reserves game there was a few good performances which I can already see there are lads pushing hard to get into the seniors.
Against Riversdale SC I was very pleased indeed! IT shows the fight we have regardless of the division of the club we are facing. I think Ross and I will have a few headaches trying to pick our best elevens this year!
Ross Evans began as a youth coach with CCFC before stepping in during the middle of the season as caretaker player/manager of the Reserves side. This year the position is all his as well as assistant first team coach.
Thanks it’s great to be back.
We have you for a second season, what made you decide to return to coaching at CCFC?
CCFC is a great community club from grass roots up. I’m really looking forward to breathing new life into the reserve side as well as supporting Rich with the firsts. It also provides the opportunity to continue to develop my coaching skills and techniques outside of the UK with two senior sides.
You have a new senior coach this season (new to you, but not the club), how are you guys going with your coaching styles?
I think we have very similar coaching styles which will obviously make things a lot easier. We both believe that football should be played in the right way, expansive, attacking, dynamic and good to watch. We obviously want to win, but doing this with goals and excitement will add to the enjoyment of players and fans alike. As we have seen already in pre-season we want players to work hard and provide healthy competition for each other. We both like to plan sessions well ahead and incorporate drills that aid development and create game like situations.
What do you want to see for the Reserves of CCFC this season?
The Reserves can have a really good season this year both on and off the pitch. We will be setting out to win the league just like the firsts and playing an attractive style of football. The team will offer development and create genuine challenges for places in the first team.
We have been doing a month’s worth of pre-season, how do you rate the lads you have seen so far?
It’s great to see so many lads each week at training. We have a lot of new faces and some players still to come back which is great. Commitment and attitude has been good and fitness levels are improving weekly. I think we are well ahead of where we were this time last year. It’s also great that we have commitment off the pitch and support with a team manager and a committee.
What style of football are you looking to play this season?
Attacking, good to watch free flowing football that can easily transition players from the Reserve team up to Senior team as needed.
With your first preseason games played, what did you take away from them?
It was great to finally get a run out despite the heat in our first match against Point Cook …definitely not like a game back in Manchester. We lined up in an attacking formation, with only three players who finished the last reserve game the previous season, so for the majority of the team it was the first time they had played together in a competitive match outside of training!
Point Cook were a decent, physical side and overall it was a good run out with lots of positives. It was pleasing to see the lads putting into practice some of the things we have worked on in training and a few of the players definitely caught the eye of Rich and myself with their performances! It was also great that the guys didn’t give up despite falling behind, grabbing the equaliser with virtually the last kick of the game. We have also come away with some things to work on. At times we switched off, so we need to work on concentration. Point Cook were more clinical than us having three shots on goal and scoring with all three. That can’t be said of ourselves as we were well into double digits when it came to chances created. Also fitness, which will obviously continue to improve with time. In summary a positive first game, and at times the football was great to watch. The second game was even more pleasing than the first, with two great victories against a Riversdale SC side that play a league above us. The competition for places looks strong and the boys are going to have to be on top of their game.
With still over a month before the league fixtures commence, fitness, sharpness and team play will only further improve….Thursday night team selection is going to be tough for Rich and myself!