LITTLE Oakley’s footballers are primed and ready for the new season.

The Acorns have bolstered their squad and are in confident mood, heading into tomorrow’s Essex and Suffolk Border League curtain-raiser at Great Bentley.

Nicky Palmer, Michael Murray, Adam Bloss and Jordan Heath, among others, have all been added to the pool of players managed by Paul Sadler and Sean Tynan.

And Sadler believes there is healthy competition across the pitch.

“We’ve quietly gone about our pre-season preparation and firmly believe we have two strong squads,” he said.

“We’ve added to the squad, which was important, as we have a number of long-term injuries to key players and every new signing will make their own contribution.

“There’s competition all over the pitch and all the players can look forward to being involved in what will hopefully be a successful season for both our first team and reserves.

“At the same time, and as we do each year, we’ll be drip-feeding our under-18 players into the senior set-up, so we maintain the healthy balance of senior and youth players.

“We’ve been very pleased with our pre-season training, with more than 30 players attending each session.

“Our pre-season matches have also gone well and given us the chance to look at new players, as well as the current ones.”

For the full story, see this week's Standard.