STAFFORD Rangers could see their own version of Gegenpressing at Marston Road next season after new boss Jody Banim promised a “high energy passing game” when football finally returns.
The former Ashton United manager was announced last month as the new man to try and steer Boro away from the foot of the Northern Premier League table, and he said that a club of this size should be targetting a position close to the play-offs.
To that end, Banim will utilise a set of principles centred around quick, attacking football that took root in Germany and has blossomed in England under Jurgen Klopp’s Premier League champions-elect Liverpool.
Banim said: “I’ve got a shape I want to stick to, though I don’t want to give too much away. It’s more about principles.
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“We want to play a passing game, we want to build from the back, so our keeper and centre-backs will be very important.
“I like full-backs to be attacking and get forward, midfielders with good rotation and brave, both in the tackle and to get on the ball and make things happen in tight areas.
“And we want forwards who are dynamic, get in behind, find pockets and get goals.
“Out of possession we’re looking for high energy, we want to play with a press, so we’re going to be asking the players to do more sprints than previously, because we want to play high up in the opposition half and keep them there.
“The principles will stay the same, but the strategy may change from week to week depending how we look at the opposition strengths.”
To that end, 11 of last season’s squad have been invited back for pre-season, meaning Banim will be looking to recruit a significant number of new faces.
Along those not returning are Joe Berks, Paul Bignot, Jazz Luckie and Jack Sherratt, who have been released.
Sherratt had been with the club for four years, playing under three different management teams, and admitted he was “gutted” to have been let go.
“Devastated to hear I won’t be offered a new deal after four loyal years of service,” said the former Leyton Orient midfielder. “I’ve had some great years along the way, but my time has come to an end.
“I personally wanted to thank all the supporters for the support you’ve given us over my four years at the club. A fantastic club with some great people.
“I feel I was one of few who played for Stafford Rangers instead of themselves and I’m gutted I won’t be there the coming season to get Stafford back to where they deserve to be.”
Another player who won’t be returning to the club is Jake Charles, who has joined National League North side Farsley Celtic.
Charles, grandson of Wales, Leeds United and Juventus star John Charles, decided to join a club closer to his Leeds home, and playing a division above Boro.
A club statement said: “Although Jake’s contract with Rangers had expired, Farsley had the decency to approach us for permission to speak with Jake, so we thank them for their conduct over the matter and we wish Jake the very best for the future and thank him for his service.
“27 goals in 71 appearances made Jake a favourite with many fans.”