Jack shows his deft touch on Lynn’s promising start

Paddy Davitt Long Sutton Ath 0, King's Lynn 5: Fittingly, Jack Defty was the star of this pre-season show on King's Lynn Town's long awaited return. Defty has swapped Conference level football to lead his hometown club's revival in the more humble surroundings of the United Counties League.

Paddy Davitt

Long Sutton Ath 0, King's Lynn 5

Fittingly, Jack Defty was the star of this pre-season show on King's Lynn Town's long awaited return.

Defty has swapped Conference level football to lead his hometown club's revival in the more humble surroundings of the United Counties League. The powerful frontman is a potent symbol of the Linnets' renaissance - a bridge between old and new - and he opened his account with a towering far post header inside five minutes from Jamie Thurbourne's deep cross.


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His tally doubled when Defty connected with Scott Cubberley's centre and he was only denied a hat-trick inside 30 minutes when his bicycle kick cannoned off the crossbar. Fellow Lynn old boy Steve Spriggs curled a sweet left-footer home from the edge of the box prior to the interval before Defty slotted a twice-taken penalty and another header in stoppage time. After the rancorous end to the town's previous footballing incarnation, this was a refreshing start. But only a start. No one will get carried away. Least of all Lynn's management duo.

“It was a really solid start but we will keep our feet on the ground,” said joint boss Gary Setchell. “That was a difficult pitch to play football on but at times we showed an understanding of a team which had been together for a while.

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“Jack has never played with Jamie but must have found his feet 15 or 20 times. I felt we looked like a team. We worked hard, looked organised and our quality will always show through. I was really pleased with how we kept the ball but, more importantly, how hard we worked without it.”

Joint boss Kevin Boon reserved special praise for his skipper: “The biggest plus was Jack Defty and that is the reason why we signed him.

“I personally think the likes of Jack and Martin McNeil will play a huge part in what we're trying to achieve. If there were any nerves beforehand getting that first early goal settled everyone down and then you could see the confidence. We showed good movement and decent quality and let's not forget this is a new team which has been put together from scratch. They've already started to gel and even after making eight changes we played some good football because it is hard coming on.

“I felt we had some lads who stuck their hands up and impressed and showed they wanted to be involved. With all due respect we were playing Long Sutton, but we have to thank them so much for putting this game on at such short notice.”

Setchell insists the Linnets have plenty of hard work ahead to be ready for the league kick-off on August 7.

“To be fair, we have done a lot of fitness work and little short-sided games but we haven't really worked on the shape and pattern of our play,” he said. “I said to Kevin, 'let's just have a look at the first couple or so games and let them go and play rather than filling their heads with systems and patterns'.

“We didn't do a lot wrong here but even as well as we played there are little bits that we can improve on and we will through pre-season.

“Before the game we asked the boys to try and start making little partnerships across the pitch - the two centre-halves, two centre-forwards, the two left-sided players and so and I thought they did that very well. It's about getting into good habits, which I think we did, although when you chop and change as much as we did you expect to get a bit sloppy.”

Long Sutton (starting XI): Scase, Jones, M Ward, Gedney, King, Powley, Piccaver, Clitheroe, Cawthorne, Goddard, Newcombe.

t Lynn (starting XI): Street, C Defty, Alsop, L Thurlbourne, McNeil, Stone, Spriggs, White, J Defty, Cubberley, J Thurlbourne. Subs: Smith, Doherty, Newton, Kelly, Plumb, Buhlemann, Moriera, Hails. Goals: J Defty (4, 22, 66, 90), Spriggs (38).

t Referee: Martin Taylor (King's Lynn)

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