It’s been a busy week at the Bright Management Eyrie Stadium as the Eagles continue to prepare for the forthcoming season, with a new player named, more of last seasons team putting pen to paper, and another major preseason fixture announced.
Tuesday 23rd July will see League One Peterborough United come to Bedford for the second year running, for a 7.30pm kick off.
The Posh who will be bringing their first team squad with them have a link to the Eagles through their Director of football, Barry Fry, who lives locally and was The Eagles manager back in the 1970’s.
Fry said, in a special video message to www.bedfordeagles.net, “As you know Bedford did brilliant last year, getting in the playoffs. They want to go one better and get promotion this year.
“They need all the help they can get. We’re supporting them, the local community should support them, so come down and roar them on to success. “Good luck with promotion, and up the Posh”
With newly promoted Championship side Luton Town also bringing their first team to play Bedford ten days earlier on Saturday 13th July, it will mean strong challenges for the new Eagles squad at home.
Bedford Town’s Manager Jon Taylor said, “It’s great to have the challenge of strong professional opposition preseason and I would like to thank both Luton Town and Peterborough United for committing to bring their first team squads to play us.
“The Luton match in particular will be the first chance to see many of their new players, as well as ours at our home ground. ‘I hope we get some strong local home support for these important preseason fixtures.”
Full confirmed preseason lineup
- Tuesday 9th July – Newport Pagnell Town (Away)
- Saturday 13th July Luton Town (Home)
- Tuesday 16th July – Kettering Yown (Home)
- Saturday 20th July – Arlesey Town (Away)
- Tuesday 23rd July – Peterborough United (Home)
- Thursday 25th July – Biggleswade Town (Home)
- Tuesday 30th July – London Colney (Away)
- Saturday 3rd August – Hitchin Town (Home)
Taylor has also been busy assembling the squad for the next season, with new signing Nathan Olukanmi commiting for the forthcoming term.
The 25 year old winger was a youngster with Aston Villa, before moving to Wycombe Wanderers. After a spell in America he was at Arlesey, Worcester City, Leamington, Dunstable, Barton and last season Cambridge City.
Taylor said, “Nathan was someone we knew very well of after the games he featured in against us last season. He hurt us on both occassions.
“We have addressed the need to increase our athleticism and have certainly done that with securing Nathan”
Several of last seasons players have now signed again for the forthcoming season. Joining Dan Walker, Callum Donnelly and Brett Longden are Joe Steele, Jack Vasey, Mason Watkins-Clark and Cade Stephens-Abbey.
New keeper Nick Bennion has now also signed his Southern League registration and committed himself.
The excitement of the new season is now really building, with the first preseason fixtures now less than a month away.
With season ticket sales 125% higher than last season, the Bedford Town fans are obviously feeling the buzz as well.
Words: Michael Jarman-Webb
Photos: Bedford Town FC