Keith Curle with reaction to the Chesterfield cup victory
Manager Keith Curle gave us his reaction to the Capital One Cup victory over Chesterfield on Tuesday night.
“A lot of the pillars of what we're trying to do were shown and brought out in this game,” he said. “The players got the rewards for taking on board the instructions. A lot of it is simple stuff but the players have had to adapt to it.
“We're not trying to play percentage football any more. We're trying to play a progressive, passing game of football. To do that you've got to be brave. You see a lot of teams who try to play out, but they then stop once the opposition step up and mark people. I don't care if we're marked - I want us to play.”
“The training sessions we've done have changed to help us achieve that,” he told us. “We're doing things differently. I've got a different approach to what I want from the players on a daily basis.
“We didn't do enough 11v11 in training last season because we didn't have as strong a squad. The players that came in tonight have the same principles as those who played on Saturday. Those principles will give us a platform to build from.
“We've got 23 or 24 signed players and the difficult part of my job is reducing the squad to 18, and then picking the starting 11. It isn't easy but I make decisions based on the games so there are going to be disappointed players.
“There is a freedom for them to come and see me to express their concerns. Sometimes the easy thing to do is look how the team played, and on this occasion the selection was right.”
On the quality of the goals scored, he said: “We haven't done a finishing session during the whole of pre-season. That has been done on purpose because a lot of the work with the strikers has been with their back to goal and linking the play up.
“We're still working on when to play forward and when the ball needs retained. I like Jabo [Ibehre], he has a great personality and he understands his role in the team. People said to me he might not score enough goals, but I think he will.
“With Kevin [Osei], we’re all delighted for him. There were some people on the bench, sat next to me, saying he needed to take the ball into the corner and waste a bit of time. I was one of those people!
“Kevin has got that in the bag and I like the unpredictability in his play. He's similar to Bastien Hery because he's got flair and ability and he can see a pass. He does do some frustrating things at times but you accept it because you want him to go out and express himself.”
“The players have had a great opportunity to showcase themselves to the Carlisle supporters,” he agreed. “That started with the pre-season games, which were excellent, and they've extended that tonight. The players are introducing themselves and they're enjoying the atmosphere and the environment they're working in.
“We're still very much a work in progress. We'll be doing 11v11 in training on Thursday so we can work on strategic passages of play within our game. We know some teams will come and sit off us so we need to be able to move teams around and gain good understanding of when to go forward and when to retain the ball.”
And on the knocks and niggles from the game, he said: “Charlie Wyke came off but should be ok for Saturday. He got a kick which cramped up.
“Steven Rigg took a knock but you know he will always empty the tank. David Atkinson had a spasm but he will also hopefully be fine for Saturday. We've told the players they have to tell us if they're feeling something because we've got other players available who can do jobs.
“I would hope that people who came to the match tonight will go and tell their friends that it's enjoyable and we're trying to play proper football. We want people to come and enjoy their football club with us.”
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