New boys win starting numbers

​ALL but one of Oldham’s five brand-new signings for the 2020 Championship campaign are included in the first 17 (a starting 13 plus four subs) according to squad numbers released this week.

Head coach Matt Diskin is guarded about the significance of his numbering allocation, but he makes the point that squad numbers have had to be earned and must now be retained on merit.

His first 13 includes Dan Abram at 1, James Worthington at 3 and Lewis Charnock at 6 — an indication, perhaps, of where Diskin anticipates these three new boys initially making their marks.

Jode Sheriffe, a fourth new boy, will wear 16 with John Hutchings, the fifth newcomer, at 19.

Three players were at the Vestacare Stadium on loan last season and are now fully-fledged Roughyeds on one-year contracts — namely Declan Kay (2), Adam Brook (18) and Harry Aaronson (20).

The full squad is numbered thus:

1, Dan Abram; 2, Declan Kay; 3, James Worthington; 4, Cameron Leeming; 5, Kyran Johnson; 6, Lewis Charnock; 7, Dave Hewitt; 8, Phil Joy, 9, Gareth Owen (capt); 10, Jack Spencer; 11, Danny Langtree; 12, Danny Bridge; 13, Liam Bent; 14, Matty Wilkinson; 15, Ben Davies; 16, Jode Sheriffe; 17, Ed Smith; 18, Adam Brook; 19, John Hutchings; 20, Harry Aaronson.

Said Diskin:

“You can’t read too much into the numbers, but I have to say they’ve got them because they deserve them, based either on what they did last season or what they’ve done in pre-season training.

“They know, though, that they have to work hard week in and week out to keep hold of the positions that the numbers represent.”

Diskin is expected to take his full 20-man squad to Sunday’s opening pre-season game at Barrow which kicks off at 2pm.

Roughyeds are still looking to bolster their ranks in time for the start of the Championship season, with the front-row a priority.

It will be an especially big day for Lewis Charnock and Dan Abram, who have both played for Barrow in the recent past.


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