Buxton building well after improved showing in friendly win over Leek Town

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Buxton boss Craig Elliott was pleased with an improved showing from his side in their latest pre-season friendly and challenged his new-look squad to force their way into the starting XI in three weeks time.

A disappointing 1-0 away defeat at Matlock Town was followed by a much more impressive 2-0 home win over Leek Town on Saturday and Elliott said: “I wasn't too happy with our first game in midweek but today you could see there was a vast improvement.

“I thought we were back to how I want us to look. We were all over them really and our passing movements were really good. And we scored two great goals.

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“There were lots of positives and that is the main thing in pre-season.

Tommy Elliott - scored second goal against Leek.Tommy Elliott - scored second goal against Leek.
Tommy Elliott - scored second goal against Leek.

“The season start in three weeks and players have to start putting markers down to get in the team. We have a really competitive squad. It's up to them now to show me what they can do.”

Despite a fearsome, torrential downpour for the opening 20 minutes of the second half, Buxton dominated and won the game with two first half goals.

Penetrative approach play created both goals within six minutes.

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Jak McCourt's delightful long pass in the 18th minute found former England C international striker Jordan Burrow, centrally at the edge of the penalty area, and he netted with a classy, curling finish, while in the 23rd minute from a similar position, Tommy Elliott slid home a Connor Kirby defence-splitting through ball.

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Though operating two divisions lower, the experimental Leek side worked very hard to contain their neighbours but were limited to little possession and hardly troubled either of the Buxton keepers, who had a half each.

The Bucks began with six of their newcomers on show in a formation based on a standard back four and two holding midfielders in McCourt and Craig Weston, both of whom impressed with some fabulously accurate, long, diagonal passing from deep to set up, respectively, Sam Smart on the right and the prominent Elliott on the left.

Buxton travel to Shirebrook Town tonight (Thursday 7.30) then host Mickleover on Saturday (3pm) before Macclesfield are the visitors on Tuesday (7.45pm).

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Meanwhile,former full-back Declan Poole, who chose to return to his previous club Connah's Quay Nomads despite an offer to re-sign, has figured in his club's Europa Conference League tie in Iceland. Though losing side 2-0, Declan sent a curling effort narrowly wide and a free-kick over the bar.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​