curtain-raiser for new bucks

BUXTON’S programme of seven pre-season friendlies opens on Saturday, (kick off 3pm), with a visit to Sandy Lane, to take on Worksop Parramore, the club newly promoted to the NCEL’s top flight.

Manager Martin McIntosh’s new signings are expected to be on view as well as other possible recruits.

One change has been made to the pre-season schedule after Macclesfield Town requested that their visit to the Silverlands be moved on one day to Wednesday, July 25 with the kick-off time unchanged at 7.45pm. At stake will be the Keith Alexander Memorial Trophy, currently held by the Silkmen. Macclesfield’s new team boss, Steve King, made his eighth close-season signing last week as Town try to regain their Football League status.

Meanwhile two Buxton midfielders of recent seasons are reported to have signed for Humbersiders North Ferriby United. Neil Stevens spent four seasons at the Silverlands, scoring 15 goals in 145 (26) appearances, while Steve Ridley, who had formerly played for Scunthorpe United and Barrow, scored 19 goals in his 162 (18) appearances for the Bucks.

The draws for the FA Cup and FA Trophy were made on Friday with the Bucks facing away trips in the early rounds of both competitions.

The Bucks enter the FA Cup at the first qualifying round stage, in the midland section. Taking place on September 8, their opponents in the game will be one of four teams – Boston Town, Quorn, Long Eaton United or Dunkirk. The other Premier Division clubs competing in this section are Eastwood, Grantham, Hednesford, Ilkeston, Matlock, Rushall and Stafford. Elsewhere in the draw, there are three all Premier Division clashes as Chorley entertain Nantwich Town, Stocksbridge take on Marine while Worksop Town will have a visit from Frickley Athletic.

On September 29, the Bucks go to Division One (South) side Lincoln United for the First Qualifying Round of the FA Trophy. The Bucks last visited them in 2007 when the game was memorable for a sensational debut goal by loanee Jason Bradley, who has recently left Sheffield FC to sign for reprieved Blue Square (North) outfit, Hinckley United.

The under 19s first-ever FA Youth Cup campaign will kick off with a home match against Ibstock United during the week of September 3.

l Two more of last season’s players have moved elsewhere, centre-back Sam Liversidge, who was not offered new terms at the end of last season, has dropped down a division to sign for Goole FC.

Including an initial loan spell, he scored one goal in 72 (17) appearances after joining from Sheffield Wednesday,

Making the same move is long-serving goalkeeper Scott Hartley, who made some 338 (1) appearances in his seven seasons at the Silverlands. Signed by Nicky Law after making an impressive display for his previous club, Maltby Main, he won several player-of-the-season awards, and new manager, Martin McIntosh, initially wanted him to stay on, but the player indicated he would be working away for several months and would be unavailable for training.

Other former Buxton players making the same move are wide man Chris Ovington and David Taylor, both of whom left during last month.