SWINDON Town assistant manager Noel Hunt says the hard work has already started for the club’s coaching staff as attention begins to turn towards next season.

On Monday, the club released its schedule for pre-season, which includes six friendly fixtures and a week-long training camp in Spain.

The most high-profile of Town’s pre-season games is at home to Championship side Birmingham City on Friday, July 19.

League One outfit Coventry City also visit the Energy Check County Ground eight days later, while Town’s four other official friendlies are away to nearby non-league clubs, including the annual visit to Swindon Supermarine, which takes place on Friday, July 5.

Speaking to the Advertiser, assistant manager Hunt revealed other behind-closed-doors games had also been planned as boss Richie Wellens attempts to put together the perfect preparation period ahead of the start of the new League Two season on Saturday, August 3.

“I think we might actually be close to 10 games as we have a few going on behind closed doors,” said Hunt.

“The best way to get fit is for the boys to play matches.

“You have to get the balance right between rest, games and training. We have got scope to move around and change things if we need to throughout the six weeks.

“We have worked through a schedule and we are all pretty pleased with how it has gone. All in all, we should get plenty of minutes into the boys’ legs.”

The Town players will report back for duty as early as next week, with two days of fitness testing planned where the coaching staff can get an understanding of the squad’s physical condition.

Pre-season training will then start on Monday, June 24, before Wellens’ side face their first friendly of the summer away at Hellenic League side Brimscombe & Thrupp on Tuesday, July 2.

Hunt said: “The boys will report back in the first week of June for two days of testing. They can pick either date to come in.

“It’s to make sure they are all OK and no one has fallen behind. Then, the first day we are all back in as a group will be on June 24.

“That will be another day of testing because we don’t want to come back and see people a bit behind.

“We want them to come back fit and ready to go so they don’t struggle with the running. It should just top them up and keep them going.

“Pre-season is so important in terms of getting everything in the right place, and we’re pretty happy with how our programme looks at the moment.”

After Town’s matches away at Brimscombe and Supermarine, they will travel for a week-long training camp in La Manga before returning to England to resume their friendly programme away at Salisbury on Tuesday, July 16.

Home games against Birmingham and Coventry then take place before Wellens’ side round off their pre-season fixtures with a trip to Melksham Town on Tuesday, July 30.