Four of Oldham’s five new signings are included in their first 17 squad numbers.
Head coach Matt Diskin is guarded about their significance, but he makes the point that squad numbers have had to be earned and must now be retained on merit.
His first 13 includes Dan Abram at 1, James Worthington at 3 and Lewis Charnock at 6 — an indication, perhaps, of where Diskin anticipates these three new boys initially making their marks.
Jode Sheriffe, a fourth new boy, will wear 16 with John Hutchings, the fifth newcomer, at 19.
Three players who were at the Vestacare Stadium on loan last season are now fully-fledged Roughyeds on one-year contracts – namely Declan Kay (2), Adam Brook (18) and Harry Aaronson (20).
Diskin said: “You can’t read too much into the numbers, but I have to say they’ve got them because they deserve them, based either on what they did last season or what they’ve done in pre-season training.
“They know, though, that they have to work hard week in and week out to keep hold of the positions that the numbers represent.”
Diskin is expected to take his full 20-man squad to Barrow for Sunday’s opening pre-season game,which kicks off at 2pm.
Roughyeds are still looking to bolster their ranks in time for the start of the Championship season, with the front-row a priority.
The full squad is numbered like this:
1. Dan Abram
2. Declan Kay
3. James Worthington
4. Cameron Leeming
5. Kyran Johnson
6. Lewis Charnock
7. Dave Hewitt
8. Phil Joy
9. Gareth Owen (capt)
10. Jack Spencer
11. Danny Langtree
12. Danny Bridge
13. Liam Bent
14. Matty Wilkinson
15. Ben Davies
16. Jode Sheriffe
17. Ed Smith
18. Adam Brook
19. John Hutchings
20. Harry Aaronson