Institute continue their pre-season preparations tomorrow (Thursday) night when they take on Trojans, at the Vale Centre (KO 6.30pm).
Boss Kevin Deery is now looking for his players to start raising their standards as the Championship season is fast approaching.
After tomorrow evening’s game the Waterside men host neighbours Limavady United, on Tuesday, July 21 (KO 7pm), before visiting Seaview on Saturday, July 25, to face Premiership champions Crusaders and then entertain newly promoted Carrick Rangers, on Saturday August 1, before the big kick-off at Harland & Wolff Welders seven days later.
“We are now a few weeks down the line and while pre-season sessions have been very good, I want the intensity levels to raise up now as the season is fast approaching,” Deery said.
“All the boys have worked hard and while we have played just two games against Derry City U19 and Cockhill Celtic I still feel we need to up things in terms of training and matches and I feel starting from next week in particular that is what we are doing.
“Playing against Limavady United will be good for us as it’s a derby and then we have Crusaders.
“The Crues are the champions and are miles ahead of us in terms of fitness levels as they have played at least four Champions League qualifying matches before they face us, but that’s the type of game I want for the boys.
“We will have to make sure that we are tuned in and working hard in both those games, but especially the Crues game, as we’ll be just a few weeks away from the opening match at the Welders, which all the pre-season work is geared too.”
Deery, also confirmed that he’s waiting on word back from Derry City boss Peter Hutton in terms of possible getting a few younger players from his squad to move to Stute on loan, and is looking to bring in a few more faces to his squad.
“I have been really impressed by the young boys commitment and attitude during pre-season and that’s fantastic, but I’m looking to bring in a few more experienced players,” he added.
“In an ideal world I would get a striker, central midfielder and a goalkeeper so we would have a bit of competition for both Martin
Gallagher and Keelan Mulcahy.
“We still have Graham Crown and Eddie McCallion to come into things over the next few weeks, although Graham has been part of pre-season training he is currently away on holidays but he’s back on Friday, and as I said if we can add a few more experienced players then I would be happy enough.”