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MANAGER: It’ll be a great atmosphere and our supporters will play their part

5 November 2016

Keith Curle ahead of the Sunday FA Cup game at St Albans

United boss Keith Curle spoke more about tomorrow’s FA Cup first round meeting with St Albans City as the squad goes through its final stages of pre-match preparation.

“What we will ask for and expect from our players is a professional approach,” he said. “The preparation has been exactly the same for this as it is for any other game. We’ll arrive at their ground a little bit earlier so the players can get themselves familiarised with the surroundings.

“Colin [West] has been there on our behalf and he has reported back that it’s a very good ground. It has a bit of a slope on it but the playing surface should help us to earn the right to play football.

“It’s exactly the same as every game we’ve played so far this season – we go into it wanting to win. That means our mindset won’t change because it’s another game where we need to do things properly.

“We’re professionals and we prepare professionally at the same time as treating the opposition with the respect they deserve. The pleasing thing is that we’re looking forward to playing games and they’re coming thick and fast at the moment.

“This will be a different challenge but we’ve only had to alter our training schedule very slightly. The game being on a Sunday has given us an extra day of training and I can assure you that we’ll use it wisely.”

On what we can expect from the hosts, he said: “They can be very direct and if they get up a head of steam they can be very dangerous. We need to make sure we address their strengths and makes sure the qualities we’ve got give them lots of problems.

“They have some very attack-minded players who like to get on the ball. They’ve also got a long throw and some very big, competitive players who will battle for everything. We’ll need to be able to defend, there’s no doubt about that, and we’ll also need to be able to work the ball and play our own football when the opportunity arises.

“As I say, it’s important to show them respect but there won’t be any fear. It’ll be a challenge but we’ll know the strengths and weaknesses we face simply because it’s another game of football.

“We know we need to look forward to it because if fear does creep into a football environment it can have a disastrous effect. The pleasing thing is we know that if we perform to the maximum it will take care of itself.”

With somewhere close to 700 United fans expected at Clarence Park on the manager agreed that he’s looking forward to what will be a vibrant atmosphere.

“It’ll be a great atmosphere and our supporters will play their part,” he said. “The support we get home and away is very good and we make a lot of friends when we travel.

“That’s down to the way we conduct ourselves. People know we’re all passionate about what we do and they respond positively to that. Our fans will come to support us and I’m sure we will all walk away having made even more new friends.”

United PlayerHD subscribers can see an interview with Keith Curle now. Click HERE to go to the PlayerHD platform. Follow the same link for more information on United PlayerHD, and to subscribe.

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