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MANAGER: A very good advert for League Two football

23 November 2016

Keith Curle with his reaction to the Grimsby away draw

Manager Keith Curle gave us his reaction to the 2-2 away draw at Blundell Park on Tuesday night.

“I think that was a very good advert for League Two football,” he said. “They’re a decent team. They’ve got good pace and movement and they can turn defence into attack very quickly. By and large I thought we dealt very well with their threat, obviously apart from the two goals they scored.

“It was a hard-fought game and we are disappointed with their goals. We gave them a penalty, then we left somebody unmarked in the middle of our box. To be honest, I thought the player should have been offside when he received the ball. I won’t know that for definite until I look back at the game.

“Some of our players appealed for that, but we do need to look at the clearing header that led to the whole situation developing. If you’re heading a ball to the edge of the box it’s dangerous because a shot from there can go anywhere, as we know.

“It’s the finer points like that which we will pick through. Overall the fair assessment is that it was a hard fought point and it was very well earned in the end. We’ve come away from home and scored two goals, with a change of formation, and we’ve adapted really well.”

“Before kick off we knew they were coming into it off the back of a good victory against Plymouth,” he commented. “We knew they would be buoyant and the crowd would be expectant. We needed to nullify their threat and get a foothold in the game, which we did.

“For us, we reminded the players that there is now only one team above us, and we want that top spot. We’re a side every team wants to beat at the moment. The pleasing thing is we have a football club which is embracing challenges and it’s very enjoyable to be part of it. The players have given everything in this game and there’s been a reward for them at the end of it.

“We’ve got functional players who can play positions and rotate in midfield to nullify the opposition and be a goal threat. We’ve got goal threats on the bench as well, so we can change the dynamics of a game at the drop of a hat. Joe McKee came in at the end and played on the right of midfield and showed us another good option. We’re trying to get him to be forward thinking, so that will help.

“I think we need to continue with the Luke Joyce finishing sessions though. His opportunity had everything we replicate in those sessions, so we’re slightly disappointed because I can guarantee that 100% of balls which go over the bar have got absolutely no chance of going in. He’s disappointed because that’s one of the things he’s been working on in his game.”

Speaking about yet another showing of excellent support on the night, he said: “The fans were fantastic again, which is why we like to get up close and personal after the match. We want to make sure they fully understand that we appreciate their support, because it’s massive for us.

“It’s gathering momentum and if we can keep increasing the numbers coming to see us then word will continue to spread. We want as many people behind us as possible because we really do think good things are happening here.”

And on trialists Alexander McQueen and Kevin Wright, he said: “Both players are working hard and it’s a case of balancing the finances at the club.

“If we offer contracts we have to be able to pay for them. We said all along that we needed to get to December to see where our finances were at, so that’s what we’re doing at the moment.”

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