22nd Sep, 2019

Fresh options are a big Studley positive

Redditch Editorial 5th Sep, 2019

THE return of fit-again trio Dave Edwards, Matt Edwards and Jordan Jones plus the capture of goalkeeper Connor McCarthy will offer Studley the chance to shuffle the line-up and formation for Saturday’s trip to Stapenhill.

The Bees made it three wins in a row after goals from in-form Dale Edwards, Harvey Smith and Sean Cooke secured a 3-2 victory over league leaders Brocton in Saturday’s FA Vase tie at the Beehive.

It continued the positive momentum, but joint manager John Edwards admitted an enforced change of system to overcome a flurry of injuries has played a big part in the upturn.

“We seemed to have stumbled across a winning formula by playing 4-3-3,” said Edwards. “It’s not perfect but it has worked with a midfield three with Lewis Marston as a holding midfielder and Dale Edwards and Sean Cooke either side. You wouldn’t say they are midfield players but they have worked their socks off and got goals as well.”

Studley had fallen behind against Midland League Division One colleagues Brocton, but Dale Edwards smashed home a cracking 25-yard equaliser for his fifth goal in three matches. Further strikes from Cooke and Smith sealed their progress to a home tie against Racing Club Warwick on September 14.

However, with Jones, Dave Edwards and Matt Edwards now in contention after their lay-offs, Adams hinted Studley had options for a ‘horses for courses’ approach away to fourth-placed Stapenhill on Saturday.

The Swans have won four out of six matches so far to sit three points off top spot.

“It will be a tough game. Stapenhill beat us 5-2 at their place last season after we lost Sean Brain and Sean Cooke in the first 20 minutes,” said Edwards. “They’ve had a terrific start to the league. They are a direct, physical side and we might need to have other options.”

New recruit McCarthy is poised for his debut after signing from Heath Hayes to replace the injured Jack Tregartha.

Summer recruit Tregartha aggravated a shoulder problem last weekend and was due to see a consultant this week so Edwards was delighted to bring in Kings Heath-based McCarthy.

“I know Connor through Sunday football and he has come on leaps and bounds in the last few years,” added Edwards. “When we played Heath Hayes a few weeks ago, he was exceptional.”

Studley begin their Worcestershire Senior Cup campaign on Tuesday when they visit Pershore Town at the Community Stadium. The Bees were beaten finalists in the Senior Urn last season but the new-look county competition is now a merger of the Senior Cup and Senior Urn.

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