Manager on the weekend draw with Preston
United manager Greg Abbott gave us his reaction to the 1-1 draw with Preston shortly after full time on Saturday evening.
“We’ve talked about seeing the season out properly and the lads are doing that for us,” he said. “It hasn’t been the season we wanted and there have been too many occasions when we haven’t reached the standards we’ve set ourselves.
“I think the fans have seen us really improve recently and the response at the end was magnificent. It would have been even better if Pottsy [Brad Potts] had scored, and that shot of his was a superb strike. I spoke to their keeper and he admitted that he hadn’t even see it.
“It hasn’t been an easy run of games for us but we’ve picked up results and people will always appreciate that. The most pleasing thing about the last few months has been the unity we’ve been building – and that’s from outside the club to inside the dressing room.
“If we can get that right going forward then it becomes a really good club. Maybe we have some hard talking to do to explain to everyone where we are as a football club. If we’re going to bring everyone together then people need to know the facts.
“I think we’re getting there with that and the fans have been very patient with us, to an extent. I’ve spoken to the board about it and I think the Carlisle people have responded to the information they’ve been given. They then expect the players to do their bit and I think we’ve started to see everybody pull together.”
“This season isn't finished yet, though, and we want to stay unbeaten all the way through now,” he continued. “We’ve played some terrific stuff lately but this one was more about hard work and winning battles.
“I don’t think we gave our forwards enough to work with, at times, but we kept going and it was certainly a game which had excitement and plenty going on. We wanted to win it but, credit to Preston, so did they and it became a typical derby game in many ways.
“The wind was a factor but we lacked just that little bit of inventiveness that would have made a big difference. If we can find a player with that type of quality, to add to the mix, then we’ll be a very good side.”
“We went with Rory Loy because he has been with us for two years and he is chomping at the bit to show us what he can do,” he said. “I thought he played really well and he looked lively. He’s a hard worker, and he’ll always give you that, and he’s another one we like.”
“I thought Jordan Mustoe really grew into the game,” he added. “He was struggling early on but he didn’t allow him [Jeffrey Monakana] to create too much after the goal. I’m pleased that all of the players are showing people that they aren’t a million miles away from the best in this division, and we need to keep that going.”
“Our run of form has been good but I was always a little bit more confident than everybody else that we would come out of this,” he insisted. “We’re a handful when we have our key players available. With a full squad we are up there and competing, but we just need a bounce of luck every now and then. We’re not too far away from having a squad which will be ready to compete next year.
“We need to find one or two quality signings to boost our strength and hopefully we’ll start the season in the right way next year.”
“Injury-wise we think we’ve come through it all fine. Long term we’ll keep looking at Paul Thirlwell [calf] and Frank Simek [thigh]. Matt Robson [back] is doing more but, again. We’ll keep looking at how he is.
“Dave Symington has a sore knee which he picked up when he was doing some gym work about a week ago. Today would have been a great game for him to come on and use his pace and energy but, unfortunately for him, he won’t play again this season. But that’s more of a precaution than anything else, and it’s something we’re able to do with the situation we are now in.”
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