Walsh unworried by ‘favourites’ Guernsey

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Although it is Walsh’s first time in charge he is far from inexperienced in the fixture having coached Jersey’s under-18s in the last six inter-insulars under former manager Jon Welsh.

Walsh said: ‘All the work on the training ground has now been done, it’s down to the players now and hopefully they will not freeze on the day.

‘That’s exactly what happened last year and we don’t want it to happen again.

We know nerves will play a part and hopefully we will get that out of their systems very early in the game.’ Walsh says Guernsey will start as favourites because they are at home.

They also have a large group from one club and have had a busier games programme compared to Jersey.

Walsh said: ‘Guernsey will start favourites but it doesn’t worry me.

We have a talented squad with many of the players in good form.

‘Craig Russell has been playing well at club level while it’s great to have Joel Speight back.

Joel has been training with the Southampton first-team squad and is very close to getting back to his best.

‘Guernsey may also have a head start having had more games together than us season, but I’m confident we can do well.

‘We haven’t been to France this season for games for a variety of reasons.

The Muratti is earlier; France has been fairly wet this winter so it’s been very difficult trying to arrange games.

‘Junior players are playing a lot of senior football – too much in my opinion – and trying to arrange things for the juniors around the senior programme is a logistical nightmare!’ Walsh says new coach Dave Kennedy has slotted into the squad well and he is proving popular with the players.

Walsh added: ‘Dave is very good, his organisation is superb and the players like him.

He has bonded in very well and that can only be good for the group.’ Wanderers’ Jamie Cullen and St John’s Stuart Daynes have withdrawn from the Jersey squad this week because of injury.

Six players remain from last year’s squad who will be eager to win back the Junior Inter-Insular Cup after being beaten 2-1 at Springfield.

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