Exeter City manager Paul Tisdale is going into Saturday’s season opener against Cambridge United with an almost fully fit squad to choose from.
Summer signing Dean Moxey is the only doubt, having missed the first few weeks of pre-season, but even he could be involved against the Us having resumed full training this week.
“The squad is looking pretty good ahead of Saturday,” said Tis. “We have had players miss a game or miss a week of pre-season but most players will be fit for selection for Saturday if not all of them.
“I think Dean Moxey is probably the question mark. He has been in training this week but how soon I play him is undecided but everyone else is fit to go.”
Asked if this was one of the hardest team selections he has to make – considering it is the first game of the campaign – Tis added: “I don’t think so. Every game is difficult and the hardest team selection is the play-off final at Wembley. I can assure you it doesn’t get any harder than that.
“However, we have got a pattern and lots of players have stayed in situ since last season. We haven’t suddenly got loads of new players in. It is pretty much set in my mind.”
Cambridge United also have a fair bit of continuity from last season. The U’s won four of their last seven matches to make an unsuccessful late surge towards the play-offs, but they have kept manager Shaun Derry in charge and added Jabo Ibehre and Ade Azeez to what was already a formidable team.
“I’m expecting a tough challenge,” said Tis. “They have got a very similar set-up and a manager who has been there from last season and understands his team and has been able to improve it where he wanted to.
“You have to assume that he’s developed his team and they were quite a strong outfit last year. We will be looking at last year’s games against them. We will be looking at what we know about them from last year because they have a manager who has carried on. However, in the same way, they will be looking at us.”