Keith Curle on moving forward and contract talks with Brad Potts and Mark Gillespie
Manager Keith Curle spoke to us about the need to keep the performance levels high as we go into the final 10 days of the season.
“It’s pleasing that we’re in this position now because I know there’s been an anxiety around the football club,” he said. “That’s not so much from the playing staff but from the admin staff. They all work really hard but the one thing they can’t do is affect what happens out on the pitch.
“I know they’ve been doing their bit for us and there’s a massive relief from them because being a football league club brings a level of security. There’s obviously a knock-on if the club is relegated and I’m delighted that the work they do, which complements what we do on the playing side, can continue at this level.”
“We’ve reached a level of performance over the last three games which has helped us to achieve that,” he added. “I’ve spoken to the players today and I’ve mentioned that we’ve had a three-game culture at this club.
“We seem to get three results, or three performances, and then it’s accepted that the next one can be below par and below standard. That mentality has to change. You can’t build success on a run of three good games.”
“There was a bit of a feel-good factor in training today [Thursday] and it took a little bit of time for it to get up to the standard we require because of that,” he told us. “The session had to be stopped, so we could get the focus realigned, and that’s because it’s important to me that we finish the season properly.
“That will give us the momentum we need to help us to into pre-season in the right frame of mind. Good habits are carried out daily by those people who have a professional approach. That’s where you start to breed success. The players who take their good habits into games are the ones who don’t suffer peaks and troughs in their performance levels.
“The fact is we’re in a results based business and everything we do, whether that’s on player recruitment or how we structure our training sessions, is based on achieving wins every time we go over the white line. We need to form good habits to help us to get that in every game we play.”
Speaking about the contract talks with Brad Potts, he said: “We’ve made him another offer, which we think is the right thing to do. It’s just the next step in the negotiation process.
“You never say you’ve made your final decision in these situations because things have to be discussed. We’ve made an improved offer which we think is around the area of what Brad Potts is looking for. We’ve tried to make it even more appealing and attractive with some of the incentives which are in there for him. If he’s doing well, and the team is doing well, it’s one where everybody wins.”
“He’s a player I enjoy working with,” he commented. “He’s working hard and adding things to his game all the time. He’s got fantastic ability but game understanding and game management is something he needs to work on.
“If we can get that into his game then he’ll find he’s in the right position, when he’s out of possession, to help us to nullify the opposition. Once that comes as second nature we’ll have a fantastic player on our hands.”
“We’ll keep talking to him and if it gets to a stage where he decides he’s moving on then other processes will come into play,” he told us. “We’re not saying that will be the case but we know, if it does get to that, we’ve made the best possible offer within our scope to keep him here.”
“The other one we’re talking to at the moment is Mark Gillespie,” he said. “We’re in the final throes of negotiation with him. If you look at his recent performances you see the calibre of player everybody knows is there. If it was down to just his playing ability then the contract would have been signed a long time ago.
“It’s purely down to the fact he hasn’t spent enough time on the pitch because of his injuries. As that happens the better it gets on a financial level for him.”
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