It’s Daryl McMahon v Keith McMahon tonight as Fleet kick off their pre-season campaign (at least their UK one!) at VCD Athletic in Crayford.
The Vickers finished the previous campaign in 18th position in the Ryman League Premier Division, their first season at that level. Manager (Keith) McMahon has made a host of quality new signings this summer, the most notable of which is former Fleet play-off winner Giannoulis ‘Cesc’ Fakinos. Another familiar face is Richard Graham, who played against Fleet for the likes of Eastleigh, Barnet, Kettering, St Albans, Dagenham & Redbridge and has also played for Dartford. Loick Pires, once a Liam Daish transfer target, also arrives from Welling United.
Other arrivals include Matty Bakare from Aveley, one-time Arsenal junior Nigel Neita, Cray striker Alex Teniola, defenders Aaron Best from Grays and Ricardo Joseph, midfielder Max Fitzgerald plus Leon Fisher.
Fleet fans, of course, will be more interested in seeing their own signings in the flesh for the first time and all of Jordan Parker, John-Paul Kissock, Robbie Willmott and Jonathan Miles are eyeing further game time after featuring against SC Farense.
Aiden Palmer sat out the Farense match with a knee problem and is likely to face just a couple of weeks on the sidelines.
The Vickers pitch, which succumbed to an unseasonal rainstorm in a postponed pre-season fixture against the Fleet last summer, has had 60 tons of top dressing and been reseeded in the close season. This will be their first fixture of the summer as well and the challenge they present is just the sort of standard Daryl McMahon wanted to acclimatise his players ahead of the big kick-off on August 8th.
Admission to the Oakwood is £10 adults, £6 for concessions/U18s, £1 for U12s and U5s go free.