ARBROATH manager Paul Sheerin will be using tonight (Friday) and tomorrow’s (Saturday) friendly double header to cast his eye over a number of hopeful trialists.
The Lichties will be in action against Raith Rovers at Gayfield tonight before welcoming Highland League side Keith to Arbroath tomorrow.
The boss featured several hopefuls along with new faces in the 2-0 loss to St Johnstone on Monday night and he told HeraldSport it would be more of the same over the weekend.
He said: “Pre-season is about getting as many 90 minutes as possible and the two games will give everybody an opportunity to do that.
“It will give us the chance to get a look at some trialists, some who didn’t play on Monday night and the opportunity to mix it up a bit.
“We took a look at Kevin Finlayson on Monday night, but unfortunately we decided not to offer him a contract so he will be looking elsewhere now.
“We just felt we needed somebody who was a bit more direct with a bit more pace.”
In tonight’s friendly clash, the Lichties will come up against a Rovers side that very nearly earned a spot in the SPL last season.
And although he predicts it will be a tough match, it is one Mr Sheerin is looking forward to.
He added: “It will be another difficult one but I know John McGlynn and he is someone I rate really highly as he coached me at under-16 level and he teaches you a lot about discipline and how to conduct yourself.
“His teams are always well organised and play good football and no doubt they will be super fit so it will be another tough one.”
With just two weeks until the Lichties begin competitive action against Dundee at Gayfield in the Challenge Cup, the boss has now managed to assemble a 15-man squad.
The numbers were boosted again on Saturday when former Dundee midfielder Brian Kerr pledged his services to the Lichties.
And the boss was delighted that the three times capped player decided to come on board.
He explained: “Brian is a quality professional and even though he has had some time out, he is still relatively fit and he is a massive boost for us.
“He has great experience even though he is only 29 years old and he can only help people like Josh (Falkingham) and the younger players within the squad.”
As the boss begins to contemplate his second season in charge of the club, he says there are still a few more players he would like to sign before the new campaign.
But as he explained patience is the key.
He said: “This year I have tried to be a bit more patient in trying to get a squad together with the right type of players.
Coming into the job maybe I was a bit rash last year because I was eager to get a squad together.
“But there are still quite a few decent players out there looking for clubs so there are plenty to look at and we are not rushing into things.
“I think we look fitter and stronger than at this stage last year so it is encouraging.”
Season tickets have been selling well at Gayfield due to last season’s success, and are on sale week days from 9.30 a.m. to 1 p.m., and prior to the remaining pre-season friendlies.
Tickets are valid for the friendlies at Gayfield which include: Raith Rovers tonight with a 7.30 p.m. kick-off; Keith tomorrow with a 3 p.m. start and local rivals Montrose on Saturday, July 16 which is also a 3 p.m. kick-off.
Prices are: adults £180; senior citizens £90; under-16s £60 and under-12s £30.