2017/18 Preview – Alloa

Jim Goodwin seems to have chosen quality over quantity this summer after he had a clear-out of his Alloa side in the close-season. This review will look at how I see the squad shaping up ahead of the new League One campaign.

After letting go experienced players such as Jason Marr, Graeme Holmes and Jamie Longworth, Goodwin also saw key figures Greig Spence; Jordan Kirkpatrick and Calum Waters leave the club.

With Neil Parry and Craig McDowall both staying, it seems to me that the goalkeeping situation is finalised with two experienced and first-team goalies battling it out for the number one jersey.

In defence, experienced pro’s Frank McKeown and Andy Graham remain while former Wasps pkayer Darryll Meggatt has rejoined his old side. His versatility gives options but I still fell the Alloa defence is slightly short in numbers. Another full-back, I think, would complete this area of the squad, with the flexibility of Steven Hetherington able to cover at left-back if and when needed.

This is because the centre of the park is so strong: with John Robertson, Iain Flannigan and new recruit Thomas Grant occupying the main positions, with Ryan Hoggan and to a lesser extent Jim Goodwin able to cover in this position. With that, I view this area complete, as well as the creative element to the side. Garry Fleming and Kevin Cawley can play up front oe in an advanced role, while Adam Martin has shown glimpses of his potential as he edges his way into the first team.

Craig Malcolm and Kris Renton provide an experienced forntline, with Alan Cook also available to play across the forward line. With this in mind, I feel the Alloa squad is strong and will compete for the play-off positions. I expect a couple of defenders would cement their place in the top four, with the cover and competition for places crucial throughout the season.

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