New-look Linnets excited by challenge of Canaries

Paddy Davitt King's Lynn Town's management are confident their new look squad will rise to the challenge of facing Championship neighbours Norwich City in tonight's homecoming friendly at The Walks.

Paddy Davitt

King's Lynn Town's management are confident their new look squad will rise to the challenge of facing Championship neighbours Norwich City in tonight's homecoming friendly at The Walks. (7.45pm)

City's fringe first team squad members Owain Tudur Jones, Rhoys Wiggins and Matty Gill could all bolster a youthful Canaries line up with Paul Lambert's senior players away at a private German training base this week.

Linnets' joint boss Gary Setchell insists whoever lines up for the League One winners will provide stiff opposition for the United Counties outfit. Lynn coasted to a 5-0 friendly win at Long Sutton Athletic on Saturday in the first game of the club's new era with hometown skipper Jack Defty notching four goals.

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“It's a massive step up but we will raise our game and give it 100%,” said Setchell. “We'll know where we are at after playing Norwich and Spalding this weekend because we have gone from a lower league team to a Championship club and then a team in the league above us.

“I'm looking forward to it and so is Kevin (Boon) but really everything is coming around so quickly now. First, it was that initial training session, then the first friendly, then the Norwich game at home and then it will be the fixtures coming out and the start of the league. We made a promising start at the weekend and overall we couldn't have asked for more. Of course there are things that we have to work on and we will get better than that, and we need to, because we will face a huge test in this game.”

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Joint boss Boon is confident Lynn's squad can rise to the occasion with civic dignitaries and Norfolk FA officials also in attendance to mark the rebirth of senior football in the town.

“I think we will get stronger and better and playing in front of 500 or 600 they will show even better quality,” he said. “We really needed the game at Long Sutton and we're really thankful for them for putting that one because we didn't want to go into Norwich without a run out. Obviously the first game at home will be a special occasion and it was important not to go into that one cold if you like because that would have been a big ask.

“Rather than what it means to myself and Setch it's really a case of what it will mean to our players. A lot of these boys will not have played in front of that sort of crowd and they will need to show some character and I think we will put on a good show.”

Lynn's management admit they face some selection dilemmas after an encouraging weekend display.

“The biggest thing we have in our favour at present is that we have so much competition for places and quality players sitting on the bench,” said Setchell. “We feel we have brought in 18 quality players and make no mistake those lads know they can not come to King's Lynn and play at 50%. They need to be full throttle to keep your place. You don't have to be a genius to look around at training and see that if you are not up to scratch then so-and-so can take your place.

“Everyone wants to be in the starting eleven - but that is why we are in charge, to make those difficult decisions. We didn't tell anyone coming in that we would only play with eleven. We want a good squad and they all think they are good enough to play.”

Lynn Town (from): Street, C Defty, Alsop, L Thurlbourne, McNeil, Stone, Spriggs, White, J Defty, Cubberley, J Thurlbourne, Smith, Doherty, Newton, Kelly, Plumb, Buhlemann, Moriera, Hails.

Supporters who attend tonight's historic fixture are entitled to free entry to the next friendly against Great Yarmouth at The Walks on Tuesday, July 20. Tickets can be purchased from the new Walks ticket office prior to kick off this evening from 6pm.

Read Lynn Town club official Mark Hearle's exclusive latest column only on

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