Manager looks back at pre-season game with FifersExeter City boss Paul Tisdale was pleased with the Grecians’ first outing in pre-season ahead of the 2015/16 season, as the Grecians and East Fife drew 1-1 at Bayview.
The game remained goalless until the final few minutes – Christian Ribeiro looked like he had won it for City, only for Nathan Austin to strike soon after and level the scores.
However, with the season still a month away, the result was of the most remote consequence compared to the chance to test out some new ideas, see new players in action, and get some game-time into the legs of the players.
And in those regards, Paul was particularly pleased with a successful outing on the Scottish coast. Of the travelling party, only Ryan Harley, David Noble, Will Hoskins and Bobby Olejnik were unused in the game and Jordan Tillson was the one player which featured from beginning to end.
“Priority number one was to get here via our flight today, and priority number two was to get to the game in the right spirit, and then play and get through it without any injury,” he explained. “All of those things were achieved today.
“We drew 1-1, but today was largely about achieving as many players on the pitch as possible. We’re really still into the first week of our training – we wanted to give as many players a run-out as we can.
“We played against very hospitable hosts who played a proper, tough game – there was nothing naughty or over-aggressive – and it was a really fair game of football that was refereed well. It is a good step forward for us.
“I consider us to be a week ahead of schedule because we’re including an extra week of training than we would ordinarily have. It’s a six-week programme and we started last week because we had these games coming up, so we wanted to ease ourselves into these games.
“This is all part of that six-week build-up. It’s the first game – it’s close in terms of weeks, but it’s a long way away in terms of training and preparation from August 8th. So I’m really pleased to get through this game with most if not all of the players in one piece.”
Not untypically, there was a terrific contingent of travelling support getting behind Exeter from the stands – and a few choral renditions were given towards the end of the game too.
And Tis admitted his surprise and delight to see so many Exeter fans at Bayview, from near and far.
“I was surprised to see so many fans here,” he continued. “There were one or two friendly and familiar faces, and there were one or two that I congratulated on the huge journey they had made, only to discover they live round the corner – which was more of a surprise!
“They didn’t get quite the same credit as some of the others, but all in all it was really nice to see so many.”
Watch the full post-match interview with Paul on Grecian PlayerHD below.