Scarborough Athletic new boy Steve Ridley can’t wait to get his teeth into the pre-season schedule.
Ridley brings a wealth of experience to Boro after making the switch from North Ferriby alongside Paul Foot and Gary Bradshaw..
Boro are poised for an early clash with newly-promoted Conference side Halifax Town just a few days into the preparatory itinery on Saturday July 6, a fixture the former Scunthorpe United, Barrow and Buxton man is eagerly anticipating.
Ridley sees Halifax as a yardstick for Boro’s progression and the left-sided schemer is confident that Rudy Funk’s side are capable of following in their footsteps.
“I’ve only had a couple of weeks off training, but I’ve been keeping myself fit because we are straight back into it soon.
“We only have two sessions on the Tuesday and the Thursday before the away game against Halifax Town, so we have to be looking forward to that.
“They are obviously a good set-up, but if we’ve been looking after ourselves in the right way then I don’t see why our fitness can’t surprise them.
“You have to look at these clubs, the former football league clubs, and use them as a yardstick.
“We have the potential to get back up there and that is why I joined Scarborough Athletic.
“This is a Football League club in waiting, the fans deserve it and I want to play my part in it.”
Ridley is also looking forward to teaming up with new Boro coach John reed, who he played under during his time at Buxton.
“I spoke to John recently and he told me that the last two away games of the season were like those of a Football League club because of the support,” added Ridley.
“I have known John for a while , having played for him at Buxton.
“The manager Rudy Funk is out of the same pod as him. They are experienced and they are here to win things.”
Ridley is not stranger to playing in Scarborough, having turned out against the old club for both Scunthorpe United Reserves and Barrow in the Conference North.
He said: “I did play at the McCain Stadium a few times, it was a great place to go.
“The fans were great for that club back then and from what I hear they are very similar now.
“We are here to bring them some good times. Paul, Gary, Chris and myself have all had some success at North Ferriby last season, winning the treble, now we want to keep that going.
“The fans can play a huge part in that. I you have people cheering and pushing you on then it has a massive effect.
“If you have a bad day but you still know that these people are on your side then it can turn your game around.
“Many teams will come to Queensgate and the size of our crowds will overawe them, which will work in our favour.
“It is all about encouragement and getting behind the team, but I do understand that if I’m playing like an idiot I need some abuse.”