Reusch Champions Cup preview - Atherton Collieries v City of Liverpool
Thu 27th July 2017 | Announcements | By Ian Templeman
On Saturday, the first competitive action of the season takes place when Atherton Collieries host City of Liverpool in this year's Reusch Champions Cup.
The now traditional curtain raiser sees last season’s Hallmark Security League Premier Division champions hosting the winners of the Macron Cup, with both sides gearing up to start the season by lifting a trophy.
For Colls, there is also the opportunity to wipe out the memory of last season’s encounter when they lost 2-0 at Colne, and manager Michael Clegg says that result provides a bit of added motivation for his team.
“We want to win on Saturday, there’s no doubt about that. Colne beat us last year, so it would be nice to leave this league now with a trophy in our hands.
“We’ll be going out as strong as we can and we will be making no excuses if we lose.
“I know they (City of Liverpool) have got some decent lads in, and since I knew the game was going to be on, I’ve tried to find out as much as I could about them.
“They have brought in some good players over the summer, so I imagine they will be fancying their chances of flying high in the Prem.
“There’s no massive gulf between us and them just because we won the league, we had a lot of tight games last year, and we will be giving them the utmost respect.
“They don’t lose many football matches, they are coming to our place and we certainly don’t like losing there, so I am sure it will be a really good game”.
City of Liverpool manager Simon Burton is equally keen to use the game as a measure of how his side is shaping up for what will be their inaugural season in the Premier Division.
“Pre-season has gone well for us, although on Tuesday night we played Lower Breck from the Liverpool County Premier League and they battered us, so that was a bit of a kick up the backside for us.
“But it’s more about fitness at this stage and I’m not too bothered about results in friendlies.
“We finished well last season, and have strengthened the squad over the summer, so I think we are definitely in a better position than we were when we finished the season.
“It’s difficult to make predictions as to how our season will go, I think it will be about ten games in before you can see how things are looking.
“There are going to be some strong teams in the Premier Division, and with the possibility of an extra promotion place some teams will be really going for it.
“We know that playing Colls will be a tough game. They won the league last season and have strengthened over the summer, so they will be tough opponents.
“It will be a good workout for us, and the lads will get a good run out against a good team which is a positive for us, and it will be a good game to help prepare for the start of the season".
The game kicks off at 3 pm, and entrance to the game at the Kensite Stadium is by cash payment at the turnstiles on the day, with Adult admission £5, Concessions & Students £3, and free admission to accompanied Under 12s.