BRYAN HUGHES believes his players will benefit from playing 90 minutes against Stoke City - but the Wrexham boss will change his starting XI for tomorrow's friendly at Curzon Ashton.

Hughes only made one substitution in Wednesday's 3-1 defeat to Championship side Stoke, who named a different side for the second half and scored twice to seal victory.

With just two weeks until the start of the new National League campaign, Hughes stressed the importance of players getting a full game under their belts.

"We found it hard at times in the last 15-20 minutes but from my point of view, it is a great test for us," said Hughes.

"It builds character going into the National League season.

"We are just building them foundations to try and keep working this pre-season out.

"The majority of the team got 90 minutes which is important now. We are at that stage of the pre-season where we need to start upping the fitness levels.

"I didn't want to make too many substitutions late on because it was all about giving them lads that character to go through pain when it comes to it.

"It was hard. Stoke moved the ball quite quick in that last 15-20 minutes but we did well."

Leighton McIntosh replaced Wales under 21 international Mark Harris after the break and Hughes explained why.

"I only made the one substitution with Leighton coming on for Mark and that was down to fatigue," said Hughes.

"I looked at Mark second half and he was looking a little bit sluggish, I just tried to protect him really.

"He played internationals while the players had the off-season off so that might have had a bearing.

"He has had a few more games than others so I was just a bit wary of that so that is why I made that substitution.

"But in general, as a work-out it was all about trying to give these players the 90 minutes and start building up."

The likes of Luke Young, Jason Oswell and Mark Carrington were unused substitutes but are set to start against National League North side Curzon tomorrow.

"We have built a squad so the other lads will start against Curzon," added Hughes.

"It is all about keep getting those minutes in."