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MANAGER: We need different skill sets and attributes

11 July 2016

Keith Curle on Workington and trialist Junior Joachim

Manager Keith Curle spoke to us at the Community Fun Day on Sunday about the away friendly win at Workington at the weekend.

“It was a very good work-out,” he agreed. “It was helped by the weather conditions, even though that probably sounds strange. The rain definitely helped with the movement of the ball because the grass was a little bit long. Having said that, I thought both teams had good spells. 

“We have to say thank you to Workington for the way they looked after us. They were very friendly and hospitable off the pitch and on it they worked hard to play their own game. From our point of view it gave us the chance to get more pitch time for our players in a very competitive fixture.”

One player who caught the eye, and who was invited to stay with the squad for Sunday’s Community Fun Day, was 24-year-old French-born trialist Junior Joachim who has featured in all of United’s friendly fixtures so far this summer.

“He’s a player who was initially highlighted as possibly being one we would be interested in by one of his representatives,” he explained. “He spoke to Lee Dykes and we were happy to invite him in to take a look.

“It’s a situation which shows that even though we have our own recruitment strategy there is also an opening there for others to come to us if the approach is made in the right manner. Junior is here because his people have gone through the right channels and we liked what we saw when we carried out our background checks.

“I think he’s been helped with what he’s trying to do with us because we’ve created a very welcoming environment within the group. The players we have in our squad know that any player who comes here on trial has been invited into the building for a reason. 

“First and foremost we’ve identified that they have ability. The question then is whether or not we can harness that ability and fit it into our squad. We’ve had other trialists with us over the course of the last week or so but unfortunately, and in my opinion, they’re too similar to what I already have here.

“We have a strong squad and that means we need players who will add something different. The other lads who have been with us showed some good things but, as I say, we need to bring different skill sets and attributes at this moment in time if we want to keep moving the club forward.”

“Junior could well be a player who has that in him,” he continued. “He’s been invited to come on our trip away with us this week, and that gives him a great opportunity to get to know the group in a completely different setting. Added to that he will be able to show more of what his football is about on Wednesday night.

“We’ll probably see him in a different formation, and with a different strike partner, so it’ll be interesting to see how he deals with that. He has attributes I like even though he didn’t hit the back of the net on Saturday. 

“What he did do was get into good areas at the right times and three or four chances came his way because of that. Any striker will tell you that goals will come if you keep doing that. He also has good movement and he passes the ball well, so we’re looking forward to working with him in a closed environment this week.”

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