Chris Sellars, the new manager of Hallam FC, believes the club’s pre-season schedule will give them the best possible preparation as they look to push for promotion next season.
Sellars’ squad will return for pre-season on June 20 before Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United send squads to Sandygate Road on July 15 and 30 and Hallam will also play Chesterfield for the first time on July 22.
On July 27, Hallam and Sheffield FC will continue 153 years of history when they clash in the worlds oldest derby match.
“The big fixtures we have got up at the ground are Sheffield Wednesday, Chesterfield and Sheffield United.” Sellars said. “So we have got three big friendlies at home which is great and then we have the Sheffield FC clash.
“We hope Chesterfield will enjoy coming here for the first time. The Sheffield United side last year included quite a few youngsters, but by the end of the season those youngsters were playing in the play-offs games.
“It is always a fantastic event and they bring a decent crowd and it is really good for us. We get a few people up here and we generate a little bit of money and it is great preparation for us.”
Last season under Julian Watts, who has moved on to NCEL Division One rivals Shirebrook Town, Hallam finished 12th after being bottom at Christmas and Sellars believes the club have to build on that for next season.
Sellars, who has been at the club five years in numerous roles, admits he is likely to be without striker Aaron Moxam who has been subject of interest from a number of clubs in the Evo-Stik leagues after his goal scoring exploits of last season.
He said: “The expectation is set by the performances towards the end of last year. We would like to be in the mix for promotion and have good cup runs. We haven’t lots of money so we have to get a group of players together and get them playing in the right way.
We have an ethos about bringing players through the club and that is the message we are trying to get out there. Young players who come out of the professional clubs as 16-18 find it very tough to get an opportunity and we tend to give them that.”