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MANAGER: Happy with the overall performance

25 January 2015

Keith Curle with reaction to the Bury game

Manager Keith Curle gave us his reaction to the Bury game shortly after full time on Saturday.

“We’re happy with the overall performance,” he said. “A big part of my job this week was to eradicate the memories of the last fixture between Bury and Carlisle. They came up to our place and showed us how to play football.

“We wanted to show that we’re a different team now and that we could cause them problems. As an advert for football, I think this game was very pleasing. Some real positives came out of it and there is something growing in that changing room.”


“We pushed them to the limit and we had some good chances and some half chances,” he added. “David Amoo had two headers at the end and, with one of them, I was just waiting for the net to bounce off. I think he just got too much on the other one at the near post and he sent it wide.

“Steven Rigg was played through and that was a great opportunity. It brought a good save from the keeper, even though I don’t think he knew a lot about it. Again, I was hoping that was going to be a goal. We definitely could have got at least a draw out of the game.”

“The pleasing thing from this is not only the application, desire and willingness we saw, but we had a lot of changes of formation and people changing positions,” he explained. “The attention to detail the players took on board within that slight disruption, as you could call it, was excellent. 

“Another good thing for us is that I can turn round and look at the bench and think, yes, I’ve got game changers. I have people there who can go on and cause problems. The three who did come on did their job. The players adapted very quickly to what we tried to do and we were a constant threat.”

“Credit has to go to the manager here because he’s assembled a good squad,” he said. “There is an air of professionalism around the place which is exactly what we’re trying to replicate at our own stadium. If you look behind the scenes, people will have memories of what Gigg Lane was like, but it’s changing and evolving. That’s not too dissimilar to what we’re trying to build on at Carlisle. 

“First and foremost our playing squad is growing, it’s united and it’s coming together. There are a lot of disappointed people in there because we caused problems for a team which likes to play the game in the right way.”

On the goals conceded, he said: “The manner of their second goal is upsetting because it was a 40 or 50 yard channel ball which was misread. There’s an old saying in football that the ball can go past you and the man can go past you, but the ball and man don’t go past you together. That aspect of how they scored is disappointing.

“There was the difficulty of the pitch, and trying to read the bounce, and we were up against strikers where you can’t give them half a yard. If they get the wrong side of you they get away. We saw that earlier in the game because we rode our luck a few times and Mark [Gillespie] made some good saves. 

“The first penalty is part of the learning curve for Matt [Young]. You can’t get square on with quick players and you have to accept you can show them one way and then you can try to make them go that way. At least then everyone knows what you’re going to do because, if you do get caught square on, someone is going to find a leg to go over.”


“The way we bounced back was excellent,” he told us. “There’s strength of character which is growing, and that’s important, because it gave us lots of positives and chances to say well done. The disappointment comes because we did enough work to come away with the minimum of a point.

“Both teams handled the conditions well. It wasn’t ideal or perfect, but the mindset and mentality of the players going into the game was good. We definitely had no complaints. We saw two teams who tried to play and compete and who tried to do things in the right way.”

On the substitution of Danny Grainger, he said: “Danny pulled out of training and only actually trained two days this week. He had a jolt to the ankle down at Wimbledon last week and he did that again. Unfortunately today – and you know it can happen on a pitch like this – his ankle gave way and he couldn’t continue. That shows the character we have within the squad. They all want to be out there. I’d back Danny to be available for next week.

“The lads are prepared to put up with the pain, and Brad Potts is another example of that. He’s had the final week of playing with an injection in his toe. We’re going to need the type of unity which is growing in that changing room for the rest of this season.” 

Speaking about new arrival Charlie Wyke, he told us: “I like the look of him. He shows up well and he’s very aware of who is around him. He knows where the goal is and he showed some neat and tidy touches. You could tell he’s got good pedigree and he needs to build on that now so he can get himself in the team.

“He’ll have Steven Rigg to deal with on that. The good thing about him is that it doesn’t matter how many people you put up against him, he will work his socks off. The first opportunity he got to come into the team was because he closed down the whole back four against the Newcastle United U21s. You could see it was a pleasure for him to do it because he enjoyed doing the hard work. Centre forwards like that will get their rewards.”

And on the final week of the transfer window, he said: “We’ve got a busy time this week. We’ll be finalising plans to speak to agents who we’ve already made contact with. We’d like to get them to come to Carlisle on Monday or Tuesday because I do think it’s important to meet people face to face. If people want to come to this football club they’ve got to make the effort. 

“We’re always striving to improve and the conversations we have aren’t about whether or not we have enough players in the squad. It’s about where and how we can improve. We’ve still got players here who are coming to the fore and they will all have a part to play. The likes of Billy Paynter, Josh Gillies and others could have a huge say if they work hard, get in the team and make the impact we all want them to make.”

United Player subscribers can see a series of video interviews with Keith Curle now. Click HERE to go to the Player platform. Follow the same link for more information on United Player, and to subscribe.

Click HERE to see a clip from this interview on our YouTube channel. Follow the same link for more FREE content right from the heart of the club.

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