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MANAGER: Team is starting to take shape

13 November 2014

Keith Curle on injuries and the reshaping of the squad

Manager Keith Curle brought us up to date with the injury situation at his regular Thursday morning press briefing.

“Steven Rigg has made good progress this week,” he said. “I think it was important to get players back onto the grass on Monday when we had the high intensity session. 

“We're saying to the medical staff that we aren't going to ease players back in. When they tell us they're ready they will be involved in high intensity training sessions straight away. Steven Billy Paynter and Danny Kearns all came through those sessions unscathed so we now know they’re up to match pace. We probably won't get 90 minutes out of them but I'm happy that we'll get 70-75 minutes because they've done it already on Monday and Tuesday.” 

“Alex Marrow and Paul Thirlwell might still be struggling for this weekend,” he added. “We weren't able to get those players back on the grass to do the sessions at the start of the week. I need to see them training at high levels because they’ll tell you they're fit on a Saturday morning without having done any work. We're trying to get the lads to understand that they need to train how they play, so they can replicate what we want them to do on a Saturday.”

“I was given the written report on Mark Gillespie this morning, by Neil Dalton, and he is very happy with where he's at,” he told us. “He had a very successful operation so it's just a case of him doing his rehab work. People know what Mark is like, he's a very good professional and he's doing everything possible to get himself back. 

“When he does get back he will have to force his way into the team because of the way Dan Hanford has been performing lately. That's what we want. We need competition for all places all of the time.” 

“I don’t think Troy [Archibald-Henville] will be ready for the weekend,” he said. “We’ve experimented a lot with him. 

“We've restricted the amount of training time we can get through his body because of the condition he has with his knee. We don't want to flare anything up by asking him to do too much. 

“Neil Dalton and Lee Fearn have changed the training regime for Troy but he's been receptive to it and he’s taken it on board. The good news is that he’s progressing nicely.”

“The team is now starting to take shape,” he confirmed. “We’ve still got a squad of players in there but that will be getting trimmed because of the players we have made available for loan moves. 

“We're still looking to add to certain areas to give us assurance at the back and creativeness and goals up front. We've got an abundance of midfield players with different skills and experience. 

“We've had a couple of phone calls about the other players who have been made available. I had a phone call last night which could see one of the younger players go out on loan and get some football. We're just trying to tie up loose ends with that to make sure that they don't go there and not play. 

“It was important to inform the players who were getting new deals and being made available for loan before the January transfer window so everybody knew where they stood. People might think that me telling six or seven players they're available for loan is a negative, but they’re still expressing themselves to me with every day they train. 

“Two or three of those players were involved on Saturday and they performed very well. They could still be involved in the team selection for Saturday and nobody has been told that there isn't a contract available for them next season if they fight for their place.”

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