Helston Athletic Manager Matt Cusack declared pre-season has been 'relatively good' ahead of his first home game in charge.

Athletic take on Teignmouth on Saturday afternoon in their penultimate pre-season friendly.

Cusack has already made wholesale changes to his squad following his arrival with seven new faces making the switch to TR13 while some established members of the squad of recent years have departed the club.

Just eight days remain until Cusack's first competitive tie against Bridgwater United on Saturday, July 30 with the former Plymouth Parkway and Saltash United coach taking over first team duties at Kellaway Park from Steve Massey, who will remain as Director of Football.

Assessing the pre-season so far, Cusack said: "Progress has been really good, I have had a number of people reach out to me and say 'there is not a lot coming out of your camp, a lot seems under the radar' that is the way I want to operate.

"It is a new post, I don't want to shout from the rooftops. I know what I have to do which is raise the performance standard. I have been working hard to try and do that.

"The boys have been brilliant, they have been working hard on the training ground and have been receptive of the ideas I have put across to them. They have also had input to those ideas which has been good.

"It has very much been a two-way street. I feel like we are laying the foundations for our game model which is developing game on game. Our first friendly was disjointed at Okehampton. We took 22 players, we played 11 players in each half."

Helston have had injury set backs though with left back Tom Hands suffering from an hamstring injury in training, goalkeeper Mike Searle sustaining a broken finger and new addition Jamie Simmonds picking up a slight knock.

But despite this the Manager has been impressed with the way his side have performed. "Aside from that (the injuries) it has been relatively good." The Manager began. "It has been as expected, it has been tough the fixtures have been good.

"Camelford was a good test, we saw more of the ball. We were dominant at Okehampton in the second half with the ball but we were 3-0 down.

"They were different tests, then Taunton who have just gone up to step two. We won't play anyone as good as them this season. We kept things respectable in terms of the scoreline and though it is never about that people do have one eye on it. We took away some positives from that performance.

"When you play the high level teams they are a little more athletic and they do things more quickly, keeping up and being able to sustain that intensity is always a challenge but it is one we rose to.

"We didn't fall away, we had some spells of possession and were unlucky not to score but we had no qualms over the result itself they are a step two team. All in all it has been a productive pre-season.

"We have this Saturday against Teignmouth then we have pencilled in Liskeard Athletic away on the Tuesday then we start against Bridgwater."

The match this Saturday at Kellaway Park will be Cusack's first home game in charge of the Blues and the newly appointed gaffer is looking forward to getting to grips with his home ground and offered fans an insight into how they expect his side to play this season, he said: "I have been there obviously to meet the dignitaries a few weeks ago but in terms of managing my first game there I am really looking forward to it.

"It'll be a tough test, I think Teignmouth beat Willand the other week in a friendly so they will want to prove themselves. That Kellaway surface, I have seen a few pictures and videos, it's looking incredible right now so we are looking forward to getting on it for sure.

"I am hoping to bring an exciting, possession based brand of football which can turn into positive results.

"That's what I am here to do I am not here to make up the numbers as such, the base line is set from previous management and now I am here to try and raise the performance standards.

"I know what I have to do, but we have to make sure we get the blend right and I am looking forward to it."

Kick off against Teignmouth of the South West Peninsula League East is at 3pm at Kellaway Park.

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