Liam Marshall believes the short stay in Exeter has boosted team spirit ahead of the new campaign, while Head of Sports Science Neal Lattimore talks about the importance of recovery,

Peterborough United under 18 skipper Liam Marshall believes the three days away in the South West has boosted team spirit ahead of the new campaign, which gets underway in August.

Marshall, who showed his own versatility by playing just in front of the back four in the fixture with the Royal Marines Football Association XI on Monday, said: 'It has been great to get away with the rest of the boys for a few days. It is certainly good for team-spirit and the lads have enjoyed it.

'We have been back in pre-season for a couple of weeks now and it has been tough, but you would expect it to be. The first game on Monday was a physical battle. It was disappointing to lose, but I think we took a lot of positives from the performance.

'For me, as a second year, I am going to try and help the first year scholar's through this year. I know how tough it can be. I will try and help them when it is needed.

'As captain you have an extra responsibility, so it down to me to make sure the lads are maintaining their levels and it is up to me to make sure I don't fall short of them either,' he said.

Marshall also believes versatility in his own game can only be positive: 'I see myself as a central defender, but it is important to have a few other positions in your locker.'

Meanwhile, Academy Head of Sports Science Neal Lattimore has spoken of the importance of recovery, particularly during pre-season.

'We have different areas to focus on as a department depending on their age groups, in accordance of the long term player development plan which focuses on windows of opportunity. The under 9s through to under 12s are focussing on speed, agility and quickness, the under 13s through to 16s and looking at conditioning and aerobic endurance and the under 16s through to under 18s work on strength and power.

'It is trying to build a physically well-rounded player by the time they reach men's football. Recovery is very important. We try and educate the players as much as we can. We have recovery sessions where we can.

'We had two games in three days, so recovery is vital. We were able to get down to the beach so the players can do some cold bathing in the sea as well as a light jog on the sand. It is vitally important for the players that they rehydrate and eat the right foods,' Lattimore added.