Clitheroe boss Phil Brown puts Blues through paces in open training session

Clitheroe FC's open training session at Shawbridge
Clitheroe FC's open training session at Shawbridge

Clitheroe FC stepped up their preparations for the new season with an open training session in front of fans on Saturday morning.

Supporters young and old turned up at Shawbridge to see boss Phil Brown put his Blues players through their paces.

And most of them seemed to like what they saw as the new look squad prepare for the start of the Northern Premier League West campaign next season.

Brown was looking for as many as 14 new faces in total before the big kick-off - and is already around halfway to that target.

So this was his first chance to take a look at some of his summer signings - and the manager was encouraged by their efforts on the warmest day of the summer so far.

He said: “I was really pleased with the attitude and application from the lads. In what was a tough first session they worked hard and got each other through it.

“The first part of the schedule is to work them hard and get them to a high level of fitness. However that doesn’t mean working without the ball all the time.

“Our sessions will always have a tactical theme attached to them as well. We are part time so time is precious and that means we’ve got to be creative to ensure we get multiple outcomes from our sessions.”

Brown is delighted with the way things are shaping up as the countdown to the big kick-off gets under way.

He added: “There is loads of positivity around the club at the moment. There’s a real good vibe about the club at the moment.

“We want people of the town to come down and support the team this season, it’s their club, we are trying to connect with the fans again.

“We’ve started that process but the team are going to need some support.

“We need everyone to get behind the club.”

The club is delighted with the way things are going behind the scenes with more than 80 season tickets already sold.

In addition the new home and away strips have also been selling well while local firms have also been quick to take up ball sponsorship and advertising boards.

The club’s new commercial manager Paul Atkinson said: “It was the first time the club has organised an open training session and it won’t be the last.

“It was great to see the way the new players respected the manager. There was a good mix of children and adults turned up to watch and the feedback we had was really positive.

“We are really excited about the new season and the future at Shawbridge.

“The number of people volunteering to help is very encouraging.

“We are hoping there will be a ‘Blue Revolution; come the start of the season and want the people of the town to be right behind it.”

Atkinson added there are plans for pre and post match entertainment to be introduced on match-days at Shawbridge this season in a bid to improve the match-day experience.

The club are also hoping to see more families coming along to our home matches during the new campaign.

There could even be opportunities for the kids to play on the pitch after matches, providing the infamous Lancashire weather allows it. Over the summer, the Blues have been able to forge strong links with the Blackburn Rovers academy.

Rovers will be sending an Under 23 side down the A59 later this month for a pre-season friendly on July 18th - while they could also send teams to face Clitheroe’s junior sides.

Plans are also in place for a team from Shawbridge to face Clitheroe CC in a 20/20 game next month.

August 10th has been pencilled in for the game at Chatburn Road - with both Brown and Atkinson looking to create new links around the town.

Anyone interested in the sponsorship deals on offer at Clitheroe can contact Paul Atkinson on on 07500 838207.