Steve O’Shaughnessy explained how building fitness levels  was the priority as Airbus were beaten  5-0 in   their first fixture of 2021   against The New Saints at Park Hall  in a pre-season friendly.

A first half hat-trick from Greg Draper, followed by a late quick-fire  brace  from Adrian Cieslewicz sealed victory for the JD Cymru Premier table-toppers.

Despite the result, O’Shaughnessy revealed his delight to be back  on the sidelines  after  a long wait for  the   Wingmakers   to return to  action.

The  53-year-old also outlined how the result was not so important,  instead gaining  minutes in the  legs  was   the main benefit of the encounter in  Oswestry.

“It’s nice to be back playing,” the boss said.

“We knew it was going to be tough tonight and it proved to be losing 5-0, but  It was more about fitness.

“They scored two early goals, the first one after two minutes. In the second period we did well but they scored   two at the end when lads were tired.

“Overall, it was not about performances but more about getting fitness in the  lads'    legs,  so it was good.”

Notwithstanding the failure to find the back of the net, a forward line consisting of academy graduate Oli  Lanceley  and  new recruit  Jake  Eyre consistently caused problems for a high-quality TNS defence.

O’Shaughnessy pointed towards an increased strength in depth, not just in attacking positions, which he hopes can be  utilised  fully  providing  the Cymru North campaign can get underway in the coming weeks.

We’ve got a lot of  competition  for places this year.  Hopefully  we get the go ahead in a couple of weeks (to start the season). 

A lot of lads are frustrated now, but on the  squad,  it is  strong  and it will be a tough time for everyone this year.”

The  Wingmakers  are in action once again this coming  Saturday when  they visit  JD Cymru Premier side  Cefn  Druids  for another pre-season friendly.

The Welshman is  anticipating  another tough battle against similarly impressive opponents.

I think tonight’s game has allowed us to get some  leg-work in so hopefully  we’re  a little bit fitter on Saturday against them (Druids).

I know they’ll be up for it because they are playing the week after  competitively,  so again  it will be about getting lads  game time.”


Joe Sargent - Airbus Media

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