Exeter City manager Matt Taylor says it is nice to see the fixtures set in stone and he is excited about the start of the new Sky Bet League Two season.
The Grecians start their campaign away at Salford City who, having strengthened considerably in the summer, will be among the favourites for promotion.
“It is good to see the fixtures set in stone,” said Matt. “It is going to be a busy schedule, we all know that, and it is a pretty difficult start in terms of the first couple of away fixtures, especially. I have not looked at the odds, but I would imagine Salford are up there. Salford and Bolton are the ones who have invested heavily in their squads so to go to one of the favourites first game of the season away from home, is going to be a tough test but certainly one we are looking forward to.”
City, having released eight and only brought in two new players to the first team squad are going to concentrate on blooding the youngsters into the side this season. It looks a heavy start with seven games to be played in October, but Matt says they will have to step up.
“There is no excuses, they are first team players they cannot be seen as young, academy players anymore,” he said. “They will get their opportunity. There are seven fixtures, and seven gruelling fixtures in October, so it is exciting because we will see how they respond, and we will see how they cope.
“They will go with our backing and hopefully they will step into these moments and these games with a bit of confidence behind them. We are learning a lot about them on a daily basis and we are learning a lot about them in pre-season as well. They have got to improve in certain areas, but it certainly won’t be for the want of trying.”
There is also a lot of travelling to be done next season as well, with City visiting the likes of Morecambe, Carlisle, Harrogate Town and Barrow in what is a very northern league. However, it is something Matt is relishing.
“There are a lot of northern clubs and a lot of travelling, but you have got to look forward to it, you have got to get excited about it,” he said. “The last time I was at Barrow, I was a player, but playing as a goalkeeper.
“That is how long ago that was. I think it was 20 years ago that I played at Barrow as a goalkeeper and it was always a tough place to go to back then and that was when I was living in the north of England. So, who knows what it will be like when we are travelling all the way from Exeter.
“However, there are lots of new grounds and new places that I don’t think our fans will have been to and in terms of the league this season there are some good places to go.”
Here are the quick links to all the content on fixtures!
- View the full fixture list
- Read Matt Taylor's reaction to the fixtures
- Take a look at the key dates
- Find out how to sync the fixtures to your calendar/phone
- Download fixture wallpaper for your computer/lock screen
- Take a look back at the last 5 opening day fixtures