Midfielder Nicky Law says the positivity in the camp ahead of the new League Two season will not be dampened by today's pre-season loss to Swansea City.
Championship side Swansea came away from St James Park with a 3-1 victory thanks to goals from Bersant Celina (2) and Nathan Dyer. They also had the City players chasing the ball for a large part of the first half, but Nicky says that was always going to be the case with manager Matt Taylor setting the team up to harry and hustle the opposition.
"I think we can do better, obviously," said Nicky. "They (Swansea) passed the ball well and moved it around and made it difficult for us. The manager (Matt Taylor) said to us that he knew it would be tough and he set us up in a way where we would do a lot of running and things like that, so he used it to get the miles in the legs.
"That, obviously, came to fruition. We did a lot more running than what we usually would but it was enjoyable enough. When you get to pre-season games at this stage, everyone is gearing up for the league campaign to start. We are looking forward to two weeks' time and Macclesfield here at home. That has got to be the aim for us and to get all our work in before that."
It was the first defeat of pre-season for City, who had beaten Southend United and Weston-super-Mare in the week leading up to the match and won five and drawn one of the four games before that.
However, Nicky said it was important to come up against a side like Swansea in preparation for the new campaign.
"It is a different kind of running," he said. "Against the sides that we have already played, we have probably had the majority of the ball and it is different type of running when you have got the ball.
"Today we spent a lot of time chasing the ball and not really having a lot of it ourselves, but I think the manager knew when we had this friendly that it was going to be that type of game.
"However, we can definitely do better, particularly when we did when the ball back. We had to be a little bit better on the ball but it is difficult when you are out of breath chasing them and you do get the ball back to spring out and attack with any quality. I highly doubt we will face too many teams of that quality when it comes to the league football, so today was more of a running exercise than anything and the boys will be better for that."
"There is aspects out there for us to improve on and there is always going to be at this time of year." he added. "However, there is certainly no doom or gloom, it is nothing but positivity. We are pleased with the pre-season so far and how we have done and we still have a lot of improvements to be made. So it is only positive stuff now and we will come in and work hard on Monday and we have then got two weeks to be ready and at our best for the first game against Macclesfield."
🎟 Tickets on advance sale for Mansfield Town clash! 🎟
Tickets for City's match against Mansfield Town are on sale at advance prices until 5pm in person and midnight online, on Friday, August 30, so you can save time and money, and pick your seat in advance. Click here to buy online!