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Squad Competition Key for Barry

Wed, 1st Oct 2014 11:31pm

Clyde boss Barry Ferguson spoke to the official club website today and stressed the importance of the competition for places that now runs throughout his squad.

While sticking to the club's budget structure, Ferguson has added a number of players who he believes have increased competition within the group and he feels that fight for places will bring the best out of the players.

The manager explained: "I feel competition is important – I don't like players coming into training and feeling they don't need to train hard because they know they will be playing on the Saturday. I think you have got to train the way you want to play and train like you really want to try to get into the team on a match day.

"At every club I have been at there has been competition and it is healthy to have it – also it brings out the character of players and shows you if players have got the fight in their stomach to make it into the team or whether they just accept not playing and they are happy with that. I don't like seeing that in players, I like seeing players that try their best and do everything they can to get into the starting 11 on a Saturday."

In order to give all of the players a fair chance to prove themselves, Ferguson has opted to arrange midweek friendlies, the latest of which saw a Clyde XI take on Rossvale Juniors last night. He continued:-

"We had a bounce game at the training ground last night for the guys who haven't been playing to give them a bit of game time. I think it is important for them that I try to organise things so that everyone stays at the same level of fitness.

"These games are there for fitness but also to let the boys prove that they really want to try to get in the team. We could just go and train them but I feel it is important to organise these games and then it is up to them to go and show me when they are on the pitch that they are desperate to get into the team.

"So far the boys have shown a really good attitude and that is why I am going to have more of these bounce games, because these are the games that they have got to show and prove that it is not just about fitness, it is about taking things on board that I am trying to coach them. It is interesting to see if they are taking them on when we play these games." 

Ferguson himself made his Bully Wee debut at the weekend against Annan and he said he experienced the same feelings prior to taking to the Broadwood pitch that he has for every other game throughout his career:-

"It was exciting – I had the butterlies and if I didn't get the butterflies on the morning of the game then there would be no use in me playing. In the 20 years I have played I have always had that wee buzz and I got it again on Saturday. As soon as that buzz leaves me I will know it is time to not even pull on the boots and train and play but I still get it just now.

"It was my first game in five months and I've not done a lot of training with the team but I still felt fit enough for my age, so hopefully I will get a few more games in. I have kept myself in decent condition and although I have not done a lot of training with the team I've done a bit of training on my own.

"When you are taking training and preparing the team you have got to focus on them first and foremost but in the weeks coming up I will probably be doing more training. 

"I will decide what is happening on the training ground but Bob (Malcolm) will take the sessions because, as I will be involved, you can't properly do the two things at the same time."

Read more of Barry's thoughts tomorrow as he looks ahead to Saturday's William Hill Scottish Cup tie at Turriff United.

Picture by James Turnbull