Gosport boss Gale: Goalless friendly draw with AFC Portchester ‘served a purpose’

Manager Shaun Gale surveyed Gosport Borough's return to action with a home friendly against AFC Portchester and said: It served a purpose.

Monday, 12th July 2021, 2:12 pm
Pat Suraci (white) in action for Gosport during their 0-0 friendly draw with AFC Portchester at Privett Park. Picture: Tom Phillips

Boro failed to find a way through the Wessex League Premier Division Royals, as it ended 0-0 in the first of two Ray Stainton and Simon Woods Memorial Cup matches in the space of a week.

For Gosport, it represented the first time they have been involved in a match since suffering an FA Trophy defeat at Dorchester Town on October 31 last year.

Gale used the friendly to hand his squad some much-needed minutes, with a separate team playing either half.

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Gosport's Owen Roundall. Picture: Tom Phillips

The Boro boss also handed seven trialists a chance to impress - and was pleased with how things went overall.

He said: 'It served a purpose, it got 45 minutes into people and it enabled me to look at some trialists and it enabled players to get some fitness and progress.

‘When you come on trial somewhere, it’s always going to be difficult to a degree. I look at a lot of different aspects.

‘We’re onto the next game, come Friday we’ll go again, it’ll be close to two 11s again.'

Bradley Lethbridge (white) tackles AFC Portchester's Sam Pearce at Privett Park. Picture: Tom Phillips

Gale has already informed some of the club's trialists he will not be making a move for them.

Meanwhile, hometown keeper Ellis Grant - who spent time at Moneyfields in 2019/20 - was handed a chance in the Portchester friendly.

Gosport are searching for a new stopper following Pat O'Flaherty's departure to Salisbury.

Released Pompey keeper Taylor Seymour had been training with the club prior to a trial at Championship side Derby.

Gosport's Matt Casey in action during the 0-0 friendly draw with AFC Portchester at Privett Park. Picture: Tom Phillips

But Gale has been impressed with what he's seen from Grant so far in pre-season.

He said: 'I’m a great believer in you’ve got to be honest with people. There are already a couple (of trialists) I’ve said no to because I don’t want to waste their time and give them an opportunity to go somewhere else.

‘There are a couple who won’t be coming back and there are a couple who are.

‘I want to improve the squad, not just bring people in for the sake of it.

‘You have to give people opportunities or you don’t see them. Hopefully, you’re looking for that little gem, there were a couple of lads who didn’t do themselves any harm.

‘Ellis did well in goal - it’s nice to have a local lad involved.

‘I know he’s got great feet, a great left foot, his distribution is very good.'