Sam Ricketts sees positives and things to work on in Shrewsbury's friendly defeat to Newport County
Town boss Sam Ricketts saw 'many positives' from his side's 1-0 friendly reverse to Newport County as well as acknowledging plenty to work on.
A solitary second-half goal from Jamille Matt was the difference between the sides in front of a crowd of almost 2,000 at Ludlow Football Stadium.
New-look Salop had the lion's share of chances on goal but spurned their openings. Nineteen Shrewsbury players were used across both halves, including seven of Ricketts' eight summer signings – with keeper Joe Murphy out injured.
Promising academy graduate James Rowland caught the eye in the centre of midfield, while wing-backs Ryan Barnett and Ryan Giles were lively.
Shrews were without injured midfielders Ollie Norburn, Josh Laurent and Dave Edwards. Scott Golbourne is also recovering from a set-back.
Ricketts told the club's website: "There are many positive from a pre-season workout to see where you are and see what we are trying to do.
"There were some good passages of play both with and without the ball.
"We just need to hone those and improve on those and add the layers to it.
"Pre-season games are very, very hard in terms that they can't resemble the intensity and mentality of a league game.
"It was a good benchmark to see where we are at this point of the pre-season, see what is working, what's not and the next level to improve on."
Ricketts' side are back in action on Sunday for their first Montgomery Waters Meadow clash, the visit of Premier League new-boys Aston Villa.
They also have friendles at Cheltenham Town, next Tuesday, and the visit of Dundee United a week Saturday.
"There were some good bits, some bits we need to work on, some really encouraging bits and some easy things to work on to take us to the next level," added the boss.
"The groundwork is in place now and it's about adding layers onto what we have asked the players to do."