Bernard McNally column: New Shrewsbury recruits must have right attitude

By Lewis Cox | Shrewsbury Town FC | Published:

It’s the start of a busy summer and I think improvements are needed all over.

Sam Ricketts has a busy summer ahead (AMA)

I believe Sam Ricketts will need three or four new players in his first XI at least.

If we want to be in the top 10, and I think that’s where we can push to rather than struggling lower down, then we need the players in with the right attitudes to move forward.

We lose Greg Docherty and the other loans – we need people of the required standard.

Sam has his chance to build his squad now. He’s got to make sure he brings the right players in.

Look at Dean Keates at Walsall. He’s a lovely guy, you can be the nicest guy in the world, but once things start to go wrong there’s only so much time.

At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how good a coach you are, if you don’t have the right players then you’re going to struggle.

They need the right attitude. They need to want to play for themselves, their family, the fans and the club.

It was a shame to see Mat Sadler leave.


He’s 34 and his legs aren’t getting quicker but he can read the game. He’s got a football brain.

I always felt he was able to give himself an extra three or four yards by simplifying the game and getting into position.

That’s called experience. I think he could’ve added to us defensively recently, but Sam has to make decisions.

You can’t keep everybody happy. Managers have to make decisions that aren’t always what fans want to hear.


I’ve experienced it myself as an older player, there’s no sentimentality in football and people live or die by decisions.

I hope Sadler stays at League One level. But if he has to drop to League Two he could be a top player for another two years. He’ll be a great acquisition for someone. He has been a tremendous servant to us. If you’ve got people who can be associated with the club it does make a difference, they become fans’ favourites.

We had Steve Cross, Colin Robinson, Nigel Pearson. Thankfully I was among those. We then had Wayne Williams and Steve Perks coming through the ranks. There is a fondness.

Even at the Meadow now, everyone stops and chats. Sads will be one of those.

I’d like to see us keep James Bolton. He is an old-school full-back, powerful and can play centre-half. I think he’ll get better.

Town have got to look at players like AFC Telford’s top scorer Daniel Udoh. There are always going to be players in the Jamie Vardy mould.

If you don’t look at those players, you could miss out. When someone scores 26 goals sometimes you have to take a calculated chance.

This is my last column of the season. Thanks for reading and I hope you all have a great summer break.

Lewis Cox

By Lewis Cox
Multi-Media Sports Journalist - @lewiscox_star

Sports reporter with the Express & Star and Shropshire Star. Covering Shrewsbury Town and with a keen eye for non-league and grassroots.


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