CARL ADAMS will put any moves for new players on hold after vowing to give his Stratford Town squad an extended chance to prove their Southern League Premier Division credentials.
Adams reflected on a perfect start to Town’s first week in Step Three after wins overs Hitchin Town and Bedworth United.
It left them second in the fledgling table as they prepare to face Slough Town at the DCS Stadium on Saturday before heading to Merthyr Town on Tuesday.
Manager Adams declared himself ‘over the moon’ with the performances so far but challenged the squad, which secured promotion in May, to continue to impress – without any need for additions.
“We have got off to a wonderful start but it’s early days,” said Adams. “Let’s see where we are after five games, then after ten games.
“I made a promise to the lads that I would give them a chance to show what they could do in the Premier Division because they have got the club where it is and got me where I am.
“I’ve told them they will get ten to 12 games and I will stick to that, whichever way it goes. I’m not looking to bring in anyone until then.
“The team has done well – and that’s what we are – a team. We’ve got no superstars.”
Town have certainly impressed, collectively and individually, in their first two fixtures as a Premier club, with summer signings Dior Angus, Liam Francis, Marcel Simpson and Edwin Ahenkorah settling in positively.
Away to Hitchin on Saturday, Town had a perfect start to take a two-goal lead before securing a 3-2 win.
Richard Gregory smashed home the first goal on 13 minutes from Angus’ cross and then Angus headed home a cross from Aaron Moses-Garvey on 36 minutes.
The Canaries were chirping when Simon Martin (45) and Josh Bickerstaff (53) levelled matters but Joe Halsall notched the Town winner on 57 minutes, tucking home the rebound after the keeper parried Ahenkorah’s fierce cross.
Halsall was again on target with the clinching goal in a 2-0 home win against Bedworth on Tuesday.
Robbie Thompson-Brown scored the first on 53 minutes, rifling a low shot into the net from a pinpoint pass by Emmitt Delfouneso.
Then, 11 minutes later, Angus skipped past several defenders and crossed from the right for midfielder Halsall to head home.
Adams said: “We’ve carried on from what we did last season and this season we’ve got even more pace in the team. Dior, along with Robbie Thompson-Brown, are two skilful players with so much pace and Edwin is a real beast when you give him a ball over the top.
“The new players – Dior, Edwin, Liam and Marcel – have come in and hit the ground running.”
The only downside for Town has been the loss of Gregory. The striker, who returned from Rugby in the summer, suffered a twisted ankle against Hitchin and will be sidelined for at least a month.
“It’s a real shame. Richard is still on crutches and he’s going to be out for four to five weeks,” added Adams.
Left back Aaron Stringfellow, sent off at Hitchin, will have to serve a three-match ban from next Saturday’s trip to St Neots Town.