LIAM COOPER is eager for another run-out when Town head to Wrexham for their second pre-season friendly tonight.
The on-loan Hull man made his debut as Town won 1-0 at the Welsh club’s Blue Square Premier rivals Gateshead on Saturday.
Centre-back Cooper partnered captain Peter Clarke in the second half at the International Stadium, having watched Jamie McCombe and Antony Kay team up before the break.
Brothers Tom and Nathan Clarke also have plenty of experience of playing in the middle of defence and Cooper admitted: “There’s no room for complacency.
“There’s a big squad here and plenty of competition for every place in the side, so pre-season is going to be crucial.
“I’ve come here to play games, and I aim to do everything I can to make sure I’m part of the starting side for the first League I game (at home to Bury on August 6).”
It’s a first run-out for ex-Football League side Wrexham, where former Town defender Joey Jones is part of manager Dean Saunders’ coaching set-up.
Midfielder Lee Fowler is among Saunders’ squad, while the Racecourse Ground chief is working hard to keep another Town old boy, Frank Sinclair, at the club.
Saunders, the ex-Wales international striker, has signed strikers Jake Speight (ex-Bradford) and Danny Wright, who played for Cambridge against Town in last season’s FA Cup.
Experienced defender Chris Westwood has moved from Wycombe, but Saunders admits uncertainty over a proposed takeover of the club is causing him problems.
A deal between current owners Wrexham Village and would-be purchaser Wrexham Supporters’ Trust is close, but still subject to completion of legal and financial due diligence.
“Once the deal goes through we can all move forward because at the moment it is very difficult to operate as a club,” said Saunders, who has been in charge since 2008, the year Wrexham lost their League status.
“Decisions need to be made and there are things I’d like to do in terms of planning for the future.
“We have our centre of excellence to think about and where the money will come from to keep it going, but that’s just once concern and I could probably list about 50 things to sort.”
Saunders will go into tonight’s game without experienced playmaker Dean Keates, who has been sidelined by a chipped ankle bone.