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MANAGER: They're a good group of players but they need reinforcements

Steven Pressley on the January transfer window

27 January 2019

The January transfer window slams shut at 11pm on Thursday night and manager Steven Pressley made no secret of the fact that he is targeting a number of additions to the squad through what he expects to be a very busy week.

“We still want to bring players in for a number of positions,” he confirmed. “We certainly need more help in attacking areas, but we also have to keep one eye on our defensive situation as well.

“Macaulay Gillesphey is out with his operation now, but we’re hoping that Gary Liddle will be fine. He hasn’t done any running on grass since he had his knock, but we’ll look at him with that on Monday and we’ll take it from there.”

“The injury to Arthur Gnahoua complicates things a little bit more,” he continued. “It looked like it might be his hamstring, which is a blow for us, and he could be out for a period of time. That’s a concern, and we have all of these things to think about.

“That’s why it’s so important for us to get the correct players in this week, and we’re working tirelessly to do that. We’re getting close on a number of players, but it’s just very frustrating.

“We’re working really hard, but there hasn’t been huge activity at any club. For some reason it always goes down to the last minute, and you usually see a chain reaction. One club can sign a player which allows another player to come out, so we just have to be patient.

“The good thing is that the window closes before the next game, so we’ll have reinforcements by then. If we can do business tomorrow, then great. We’re certainly closing in on deals, that’s what I must say, but it’s never easy to get the right ones.”

As for what he’s looking for over the course of the next week, he told us: “We need at least four or five new additions. With Macca and Arthur out, and also with Jack Sowerby having played his final game for us, we’re definitely thin on the ground.

“I must mention Jack, the lads gave him a round of applause in the dressing room at full time to thank him for his contribution while he’s been here. He’s been an amazing player since coming here. He’s a gem of a lad and it’s just a shame that he won’t be staying with us.”

Speaking more about the need to keep the current momentum going, he said: “We know we must bring in the players for the current group, because they’ve got us into this unbelievably good situation.

“I inherited a very good group of players who have been performing at a very high level, and we just need to keep that going.

“Winning in the manner we did on Saturday shows good signs of a team that wants to do well. We gave the ball away too easily at times, but we grew into the game and we always looked dangerous on the counter.

“The players who are playing so well now deserve reinforcements to give them a chance to go on and achieve what they’re working so hard to do. That’s why we’re working very hard to get good players in the building who will help to give us a real chance.”

“It’ll be hard to maintain a run like this if we don’t get those reinforcements in,” he agreed. “We’ve done exceptionally well to get six points from the last two games when you consider the players we’ve lost, but 16 more games is a long time with a small group.

“The one thing I can say is that I know we have the money in place to bring good players in. I’ve been promised that, and I’m working with my staff and David to make it happen. We’ve been close on a number, there’s a number that’s bubbling away where all we need is the green light, but the biggest thing is that I want to bring in the right players for this club. There are no guarantees, but we’ll be doing everything we can to make it happen.”

Having been linked to Villa midfielder Callum O’Hare over the weekend, he said: “Callum is a very good player who we are interested in. He’s a very talented kid who is a good midfield player.

“I’ve seen him a number of times at Villa because of my son’s connections there, and I’ve always been very impressed with him. He’s an exciting player and hopefully we can move forward with that one.

“He has goals and creation in him, and he’s already played in the Villa first team. He’s well thought of at that club and he could be an exciting acquisition for us. He’d be a good option with Sowerby going but he’s one of a number we hope to bring in.”

“It’s all there for us to play for, but we’ll only maintain this if myself and David [Holdsworth] get the players we want in,” he reiterated. “I think this next three or four days will decide how we go.

“I think if we don’t get the right players in then we’re probably too thin on the ground to make a serious impact. If we do get the right players, then we have a real chance.

“That’s why we continue to wait for Jerry Yates. We think he’ll be able to come out to us if Rotherham can get the relevant player in. I think they’ve been close on a number that have fallen through, so we’ll just have to be patient on that one and hope it happens.

“However, we also have to be working on other deals at the same time, just in case it doesn’t.”

Click HERE to watch an interview with Steven Pressley on iFollow United now.

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