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Pre-season chat: Craig Mossman (Penyffordd Lions)

Penyffordd Lions manager Craig Mossman (furthest right)

Penyffordd Lions will compete in the tier 5 North East Wales League Championship this season.

Grassroots North Wales caught up with manager Craig Mossman.

Grassroots North Wales

Overall, what shape are you in as a first team and club ahead of the 2020-21 season?

Craig Mossman

We are in really good shape, the majority of lads looked after themselves during the lockdown so pre-season so far has far exceeded my expectations and fitness levels a lot better than I anticipated.

Grassroots North Wales

You’ve made a few signings, please tell us about one or two of your players to look out for this season

Matty Holmes

Craig Mossman

We have had a number of lads come along wanting to play for the Lions rather than be approached so that for me shows the hunger.

I think the big plus for us is the lads that have stayed on or committed for more football this year including Rob Salisbury, who has looked sharp in training and Matty Holmes, who is like a fine wine, just gets better with age.

Combined with those experienced lads we had a number of the U-19’s sign on this season and they are chomping at the bit to play each match so we’ve got good competition for places.

Grassroots North Wales

Who do you see as the strongest teams in your division?

Craig Mossman

I still honestly think our league is one of the most competitive around.

You’ve seen teams that go up from this division (when it was the old North East Wales League) and go on to be competitive and successful in higher leagues including Plas Madoc and Queen’s Park.

I think this year Caerwys, Sychdyn and a few of the new teams will be up there challenging but anyone can beat anyone so we could have an outsider surprise everyone.

Penyffordd Lions are no strangers to winning trophies. In 2017-18 they won the Horace Wynne Cup and President’s Cup within the North East Wales League

Grassroots North Wales

How difficult has it been to keep your squad motivated during the Covid-19 crisis? What challenges have you had to overcome?

Craig Mossman

It’s been difficult but as I mentioned previously the lads have been keeping themselves in shape so that’s really helped.

Everyone just wants to get back to playing again so all the lads have been really reactive and flexible with the procedures we’ve had to put in place – to make it safe for everyone.

Grassroots North Wales

What are your ambitions for the season ahead?

Craig Mossman

As always with us, we want to challenge for the league and for different cup competitions and have fun doing it.

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