Harrison confident ahead of Newtown test

Ammanford AFC boss Gruff Harrison has insisted that his first team squad are raring to go ahead of the start of the JD Cymru South season, after achieving survival in their first season back in the second tier of the domestic pyramid last season.
In the first weekend of the new season, Harrison’s charges defeated Penrhyncoch 2-1 to see the club advance to the Second Round of the competition which has now been extended down to Tier 2 sides.
Now, his side will make the trip to Newtown for the challenge of facing the JD Cymru Premier outfit before they kick off the league campaign next week.
However, as a result of the new competition admittance, the club have started their season two weeks earlier than in previous years, but Harrison is confident they are in good shape.
“We’ve had a shorter preseason than usual with the start of the season coming sooner than in past years with the first two rounds of the new league cup the first two weekends, but despite that the squad are in good condition. We have one slight injury concern but apart from that we are healthy and that is the most important thing for me after preseason.”
“I’ve seen a hunger from every single player. We have a few new concepts to our play we wanted to implement and so far so good. 
Everyone is motivated and clear on what we want. I’m happy with everyone and their application so far. 
And Harrison believes they are more than capable of upsetting the odds on Saturday afternoon.
“There is a reason football is the greatest game on earth and that is anything can happen. We won’t be going there to make up the numbers. We will give it our all.”
Despite having made a number of key additions in the transfer window so far, with Lee Trundle and Andy Robinson having joined the club this summer, Harrison believes that they will offer more than just their ability on the pitch, as they join with an understanding of the community role the football club plays.
“They obviously will bring great experience and quality, but they understand they are part of Ammanford AFC and that’s the most important aspect of our club. They have been great since arriving and will be great assets to go alongside an already outstanding group of players. 
“They will also help us within the wider community to establish greater links as we aim to further establish the club within our area.”
However, despite the high profile signings that the club have made, the manager does not believe there will be any more departures or arrivals from the squad before the closure of the transfer window on September 2nd.
“No, I am very happy with the depth within the squad and everyone will play their part this season. We won’t be adding any more before the window closes and I don’t expect anyone to leave.”
Having achieved the primary goal of survival last season in Welsh League Division One, the club now have the opportunity to make their mark on the newly rebranded second tier.
With the Football Association of Wales having taken control over the second tier from the Welsh League, the leagues have now adopted a new identity in the shape of the Cymru Leagues, and manager Harrison believes that it’s an exciting time for the club to be involved with the process.
“It was important we retained our status in this league last season to ensure our involvement in the rebranding and so far it’s evident the professionalism has raised greatly. It’s an exciting time to be involved with any club within this league. Every club has had to sink or swim and that will only raise the standards again.”
But despite his desire to be successful on the pitch this season, Harrison is eager to ensure that the football club cements its place as a community hub and to continue to progress in its work of promoting the Jac Lewis Foundation, which was setup last season to aid the mental health awareness and support in the area.
As they are every season, on the field we want to win every fixture we play in. If we can’t we’ll work out why and try to improve. We are working hard to get better and better and that needs to translate into wins and points. How hard we work will collerate with the outcome of football matches were involved in and consequently our league position. 
Off the field I want us to become a community hub and further promote our commitment to the Jac Lewis foundation in relation to mental health awareness.”

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