Mark Bonner has been pleased with his side’s efforts over the past week, as pre-season preparations have intensified in South Wales…
“The week has been everything we wanted it to be really” he said, “fair play to the lads, it’s been absolutely scorching, and they’ve done really well to get some good work in.”
“We wanted the game to be two 60-minute games, like last season. Unfortunately, due to Cardiff being a week behind in their pre-season preparations, this was unable to be the case.
“So at the end of the game, we’ve done two 15 minute sessions with the lads to get them to work for an equivalent of a 60-minute game. So, for them to put the effort in that they have is very good, and it’s been a very good week for us.”
Despite the result, there were plenty of positives to take out of United’s performance against Championship side Cardiff City.
“Results are almost immaterial at this stage in pre-season, you just want games that are competitive that get you physically in shape for the new season.
“We’re mixing and matching teams at this point, and really balancing out starting elevens, so everything’s a mix-up – but you just want to see some themes in our play that we’re working on, and obviously everyone’s still trying to get really fit at this stage.
“We saw some really good passages of play, we scored some good goals and there were moments where we had to stay in a defensive shape.
“There were errors and too many turnovers that we’ve just got to work on, but that’s the game and we knew that was going to be the case, that’s why we like to play these teams in pre-season.
“The overall outcome of the afternoon is that we’ve been able to take more positives from the game than negatives.”
Several Cambridge United academy players have played roles within United’s pre-season so far.
“A few of the lads will leave us on loan when our game schedule and the numbers we have in the squad allow us to make that happen.
“Lewis Simper and Ben Worman have obviously played in the team over the past year so they are a part of the squad now.
“Glenn McConnell and Kai Yearn have been with us all week, they’ve all done really well and they’ve conducted themselves well. I think that’s important for the young players.
“As and when we can strengthen our first team squad, it will give the youngsters opportunities to go out on loan to get that first team experience which is vital to them.”
Attentions now turn to Notts County next weekend at St. Neots.
“We’re now looking forward to getting back to Cambridge; I think the next couple of weeks are going to be scorching so that’s going to be really tough on the lads.
“Hopefully next weekend against Notts County we can look forward to building up to bigger game minutes as we get closer to the start of the new season.”