Peppermints line up high-profile fixture

Peppermints line up high-profile fixture

Peppermints line up high-profile fixture

14th April 2021

By Tom Howe

Newquay manager Craig Ainslie has hinted at a marquee friendly fixture to welcome football and supporters back to Mount Wise summer.

The Peppermints, under new management following the departure of Tony Mackellar after five seasons, have already announced home pre-season ties against Southern League side Nuneaton Borough and Cribbs of the Western League.

Following rules set out in the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown, Ainslie’s charges returned to training of late with ‘one or two’ players ready to drop into play for the club’s

Academy side in their East Cornwall Premier League Covid Cup.

After their own season was curtailed, Newquay won’t start moving up the gears until this summer when an extensive programme of friendly fixtures will warm them up for the 2021-22 campaign. After West Bromwich Albion, Manchester City and Portsmouth all visited the area in the not too distant past, could there be another high-profile opponent on the cards?
“We have got some fixtures lined-up for pre-season already and we are trying to pad that programme out,” began Ainslie when speaking to the Voice. “The Academy team have got some fixtures coming up in this East Cornwall Covid-Cup.

“We might see one or two in the first team go and help them out because they have a raft of injuries, to get one or two of the lads some match fitness with them and help them out but we have nothing planned ourselves until the end of June and into July really.

“I have been delighted with the support from the club and the committee with the things that we want to do in terms of on the pitch activity, on injury prevention, on physio sessions and making sure the lads are using their time now. They are getting themselves in the best position they can so we can hit pre-season running, not with players turning up in June with niggles and knocks.

“All we are doing really is a few sessions to keep the lads together, nothing too strenuous and that is between me, Tony Mackellar and Shaun Middleton. Hopefully in the next few weeks we will start feeding in some of the things we want to be doing during pre-season but we will be looking to have a break in May and into June to give the lads a chance to enjoy the summer. Then we will look at it properly from the middle of June.

“There is another game on the calendar but we are waiting for approval from the opposition before announcing that one. It will be another good test for our lads for different reasons than the Nuneaton fixture. It is a really good fixture and hopefully one that will spark an interesting and get some people into the ground. I don’t see it being too long before we can announce it. There is some potential for other fixtures with some clubs at a similar level to us having coming forward to say they would like to discuss the possibility. Hopefully we’ll have a good range of fixtures - six, seven or eight games even.”

Ainslie spoke further on the ‘positive’ feeling at training and on welcoming the next generation of players, including the likes of James Edlin, Josh Evans, Eagan Fabby and Tom Dolan, into his camp when adding: “What has been real positive for me is the opportunity to look at some of the young lads who were in the squad last year that I have not managed to see just yet. We have got three or four here involved with Truro City under-18s and are local Newquay lads who are looking to be part of the squad next season.

“What is exciting for me is that having seen them I can see these lads are not here just to make up the numbers. They are really talented lads who think really well, are very grounded and will be a really good part of the squad. Hopefully we will see some of those lads regularly throughout the season and not just on the fringes.”