Alex Morris says Crewe Alexandra’s players are motivated by the desire to give supporters belief and optimism, as they prepare for the League Two opener at Rochdale.
Pre-season is finished and the real action will get under way at Spotland tomorrow (Saturday, 3pm).
The gaffer is satisfied with a summer that has seen the squad bolstered with quality signings and a strong team spirit forged.
Alex believes his men will go all out to reward about 1,000 travelling supporters when 2022-23 gets up and running.
He said: “We are all excited to get started. A lot of hard work has gone into the preparation on and off the pitch, and we are really keen to get off to a good start – that’s as important as ever, especially on the back of last season.
“We need to redevelop that feel-good factor and give our supporters some belief and optimism moving forward.
“The players are completely immersed in what we want them to do. They are a great group of lads with excellent application and enthusiasm. A lot of them care deeply about the club and they are all willing to fight for the shirt for 90 minutes, week in and week out.
“There is so much hype about the first game of the season because it has been about three months since the last competitive game. It is only three points, but getting them doesn’t half give you some momentum and belief.
“We are ready and we are looking forward to it.”
The manager is expected to hand out a number of debuts to summer signings, with the likes of Kelvin Mellor, Conor Thomas, Charlie Colkett, and Khanya Leshabela in the frame.
A number of other squad members have been in a race against time to be in contention for the weekend.
Alex added: “It’s not been ideal to have quite a few of the players missing at times through pre-season, but a lot of those are now working their way towards being available for selection.
“Some won’t be match-fit but we are nearing a full quota. Zac (Williams) is getting closer and closer, although the Rochdale came will probably come a bit too early. Chris Long is getting closer too but also might not make Rochdale.
“With Rio (Adebisi), it might be another two or three weeks because that one is going slower than we’d have hoped, but hopefully he can get back fit without any setbacks.”