Bentley happy to play trialist game in signings hunt

Michael Rose, left, and Ryan Croasdale, right, in action against Bamber Bridge.
Michael Rose, left, and Ryan Croasdale, right, in action against Bamber Bridge.

Jim Bentley is happy to play the trialist game as he looks to finalise his Morecambe squad.

Usually a manager who has things pretty much settled by the start of pre-season The Shrimps boss has gone down a different route this summer.

Bentley fielded eight trialists in the opening 3-0 friendly win at Bamber Bridge on Tuesday night and looks set to run the rule over them again when Blackburn and Bury visit the Globe Arena for a mini-tournament on Saturday.

Michael Rose, Ryan Croasdale and Deane Smalley are amongst those looking to impress while Burnley youngsters Daniel Agyei and Alex Whitmore are being assessed ahead of potential loan moves.

Bentley said: “In an ideal world you’d have your squad in and you’d be up and running.

“It’s not always like that and it’s a good opportunity to have a look players before you bring them in.

“I’ve done that in the past with loan players, having a look at them before you commit to a one or two-year contract.

“It does work well, you get to know them and what type of player they are, what type of personality they are, whether they fit the group.

“It’s a good exercise and we’ll run the rule over them again in training this week and then we’ll see what happens.”

As for areas that need strengthening, Bentley is looking across the board.

He said: “We still need a little bit in all areas.

“We’ve only got one ‘keeper at the club, we’re a little bit light in defence and we could probably do with another midfielder and another forward.

“If we can do any more we’ll do more.

“We’re always trying to improve and if the right player comes along we’ll try and get them in.”

It was a youthful looking Shrimps side at Bamber Bridge with Bentley searching for the right blend between youth and experience.

He said: “There’s nothing wrong with having young players as long as they’re capable and good enough.

“You’ve got to have that little bit of quality and experience as well.

“We’ve got that with Barry Roche, Kevin Ellison, Dean Winnard came on in the second half.

“We’ve got Peter Murphy to come back into as well and although Alex Kenyon’s only 23 he’s got 100 games under his belt.

“We want youthful enthusiasm and legs but we also want that experience as well.”