TEAM PREVIEW: Exeter City – Alan Banks hopes for a good season

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It’s almost unheard of to see a manager embarking on a decade in charge of one club in League Two, but that’s what Paul Tisdale will do this season and he’s edging ever closer to taking Exeter City to League One. 10th last year lays the foundation for a big push over the next ten months and with some solid recruitment, they could have every chance.

Last Season: League Two (10th)

Manager: Paul Tisdale

 

Squad

GKs: Bobby Olejnik, James Hamon, Christy Pym
DFs: Danny Butterfield, Craig Woodman, Jamie McAllister, Christian Ribeiro, Jordan Moore-Taylor, Jordan Tillson, Josh Read, Troy Brown
MFs: David Noble, Ryan Harley, Matt Oakley, Lee Holmes, Arron Davies, Emmanuel Oyeleke, David Wheeler, Tom McCready, Joe Charles
FWs: Alex Nicholls, Jamie Reid, Tom Nichols, Matt Jay, Ollie Watkins, Cameron Gill

 

Transfers

In: Lee Holmes (Preston North End), Bobby Olejnik (Peterborough United), Emmanuel Oyeleke (Brentford), Troy Brown (Cheltenham Town)

Out: Pat Baldwin (Weymouth), Scot Bennett (Notts County), Graham Cummins (St. Johnstone), Clinton Morrison (Released), Liam Sercombe (Oxford United), Alex Byrne (Weston-Super-Mare – Loan), Jason Pope (Weston-Super-Mare – Loan), Connor Riley-Lowe (Truro City – Loan)

 

First Six: Yeovil Town (H), Northampton Town (A), Dagenham & Redbridge (A), York City (H), AFC Wimbledon (A), Leyton Orient (H)

Likely Lineup: Olejnik – Butterfield, Ribeiro, Woodman, McAllister – Harley, Oakley, Holmes, Davies – Nicholls, Reid

 

A word from…Alan Banks

On his time with Exeter City I have a huge bond with the club, along with other old players we go along every home game, probably about seven or eight of us go every Saturday and have a drink in the bar and take in the game.

It’s very close to my heart Exeter City, I’ve been down here 50 years and obviously you become quite attached in that time.

On watching football changed Sometimes I feel the game has changed for the worse. I’m always getting asked by certain people if I wish I was playing now and I say no, that I enjoyed it back then.

There was very little money back then but I loved it, the game has changed so much now and it’s almost unbelievable just how different it is. We do have the chance now to spend a little on the ground and I think they’re replacing a stand next season which has been there for over 100 years, but the main thing is the state of the pitch now is fabulous, a world away compared to when I first arrived!

On the current side Paul Tisdale as far as I’m concerned has done a fantastic job and brought a lot of young players through the academy, they’ve sold players on for quite good money which has kept the club running.

Paul likes to bring in players from the academy which is very pleasing for the locals, unfortunately they had to sell Matt Grimes to Swansea for just under £2m but that’s certainly helped the club financially and allowed them to make a lot of improvements to the ground. But he’s gone to a smashing club, a really good footballing club with a young and vibrant manager.

Unfortunately, their home form has let them down in the last few years, the away form has been much better and if they can improve that form at home then we’d have a really good chance of getting in the play-offs.

On relegation and England’s World Cup That particular season, 1965/66, I was transferred over to Plymouth Argyle who were in the 2nd division and I was only going down the road to play.

I played the very first game for Plymouth and then the manager dropped me and didn’t play me until just before Christmas, so I left about 18 months later and came back to Exeter, I just felt I didn’t get a proper chance at Plymouth.

 

The Offside Rule Podcast Prediction: With a manager who knows the club like the back of his hand and some good signings from the leagues above, there’s no reason why Exeter can’t launch an assault on at least a play-off spot this season.

Key Player: Craig Woodman – He has really made himself a part of the starting eleven since arriving at the club in 2012. Just three years later and he’s already well passed the 100 appearances mark and is only getting better.

One to Watch: Jamie Reid – After playing the odd game in the shadows of Clinton Morrison last season, the 21-year-old may now be ready to step into the first team on a more permanent basis and could be one to keep a close eye on this season.

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