‘Safety first’ approach for Bury

David Flitcroft
David Flitcroft
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Ambitious Bury do not have great expectations upon their return to League One, according to Bury Times sports writer Craig Nelson.

The Shakers landed former Port Vale striker Tom Pope - beating Doncaster Rovers to his signature in the process - and fellow forward Leon Clarke earlier this summer.

Ex-Rovers trialist Peter Clarke also joined Bury and is one of only two senior centre backs fit for Saturday’s opening day clash.

Bossed by former Barnsley manager David Flitcroft, Bury were promoted from League Two last season and are two years into a five-year plan to reach the Championship.

Nelson says the club have modest expectations ahead of their return to the third tier.

He said: “The manager’s already said that this season is about staying in this division.

“The players probably think they’re capable of more but really it’s about acclimatising to the division and first and foremost getting safe.

“If they get off to a good start those expectations may be realigned.

“They’re unbeaten in pre-season,” he added.

“They beat Preston on Saturday and got a draw against Blackburn so things are looking good.

“Leon Clarke’s done well up front and Pope has been flitting in around him.

“The problem this weekend is at the other end of the pitch, with only a couple of centre backs fit.”

Sixteen-year-old centre back Matty Foulds is expected to be called up as cover for Peter Clarke and Nathan Cameron.

Former Rovers midfielder Dean Furman featured as a trialist for Bury against Preston.