Bonner: "There were plenty of positives we can take"

Mark Bonner was happy with his side’s performance as they saw off Championship side Watford in their first pre-season outing of the new season…

Harvey Knibbs’ strike, coupled with Joe Ironside’s quick-fire brace either side of the half-time whistle saw the U’s run-out victorious as they kicked off their pre-season schedule with a win over the Championship outfit.

“It was everything we wanted”, he said. “We’ve gotten through the first two weeks of training with everyone fit and healthy, and at this stage of pre-season, that’s all you’re really looking for.

“Today was a good workout, everyone got 45 minutes in the tank, and we’ve seen out there loads of things we’ve been working on in training, which is good, as well as things that we need to work on further.”

The boss was happy to see his side return onto the pitch playing against another side as opposed to training games.

“It was a really good performance and there were plenty of positives we can take out of the game and work on going forward.

“The boys will be relieved and happy to get through the game; they’ll be feeling in better physical shape after that.”

Pre-season preparations will now intensify as the side travel to South Wales for a training camp before concluding the week playing against Cardiff City on Saturday.

“This afternoon’s performance gives us a platform to build upon before we travel to Cardiff on Tuesday.”

New signing Saikou Janneh impressed in his opening 45-minute cameo in a United shirt.

“We’re just playing 45 minutes for everyone at the moment, and it will be the same on Saturday against Cardiff.”

“It was nice to see certain shapes, and in the first 45 minutes this afternoon we had a really quick front four.

“He had some nice moments in the game and I think overall it’s been a really nice start to his United career.

“Saikou played well but he has a lot to learn still about the way in which we want to play and our principles, but he’s only had a couple of sessions since arriving.”

Despite recently being relegated from the Premier League, the Hornets fielded two sides who boasted riches of international and Premier League experience.

“We can learn a lot from these games, but we don’t really look at who we’re playing at this stage of pre-season.

“We want to play against these types of teams throughout pre-season because we know that they’re athletic and can offer us different types of challenges.

“No-one will say they’re not bothered if they lose or say they don’t care when they win, of course we’re happy with the win but at this stage it really isn’t the be all and end all.”