Jim Bentley explains Morecambe’s pre-match preparations ahead of FC United of Manchester visit

Kevin Ellison in action during last year's pre-season trip to Bamber Bridge, whom the Shrimps visit on Saturday
Kevin Ellison in action during last year's pre-season trip to Bamber Bridge, whom the Shrimps visit on Saturday

Morecambe begin their pre-season campaign on Tuesday evening with manager Jim Bentley looking forward to seeing his new players in action.

The Shrimps kick off their preparations for the new season with a trip to FC United of Manchester (7.45pm), the first of six pre-season outings for Bentley’s senior players.

That is followed by another match at Bamber Bridge on Saturday (3pm), while Barrow, Everton’s Under-23s, Marine and Accrington Stanley make up the rest of the schedule.

Results will be secondary with the main focus on giving players game time and letting the summer signings develop an understanding with their new team-mates.

“Games are games and it doesn’t matter who you get,” Bentley said.

“We’re having different types of games with non-league sides, Under-23s and Accrington Stanley from League One.

“There aren’t any Premier League or Championship clubs this time but the programme isn’t bad and we’re quite pleased with it to be honest.

“We always work off having a six-game programme in pre-season for the senior lads as well as a few for the young ones.

“It’s quite structured in that respect and it works well for us, no matter who we play.”

The warm-up games will allow fans a first look at the Shrimps’ new signings.

Having released five players at the end of last season, Morecambe also saw Zak Mills and Aaron Collins turn down new deals in favour of moves to Oldham Athletic and Forest Green Rovers respectively.

Former loanee Liam Mandeville also opted to try his luck elsewhere, dropping down into the National League by signing for Chesterfield.

With players including Cole Stockton, Adam Buxton and John O’Sullivan brought in as replacements, Bentley admitted to having a busy summer.

“It’s perhaps wishful thinking that we’d keep the squad together,” he said.

“Players have moved on for different reasons, but from my point of view, I’d like to thank them for the contribution they made.

“It’s been about trying to get the right replacements in and we’re looking forward to having a good pre-season.”