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MANAGER: We don't foresee any problems at this stage

Steven Pressley on a loan midfielder and a Championship striker

31 July 2019

United boss Steven Pressley confirmed this week that he’s still waiting for a definitive answer on the possibility of a loan deal with a Championship striker which has been a frustrating on/off situation for a number of weeks now.

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“The latest on that is that we’re still waiting on that same player, if truth be told,” he said. “It’s like all of these situations, there are no guarantees. The club really would like the player to come here, but the player also has to want to come.

“We’re still at a stage where we’re having to wait on that, to see how it develops. We can’t wait forever, everybody knows that, and we do have other options which we are also pursuing.

“With the midfielder we’ve spoken about, we’re very close with that. There’s just a few things to sort between the clubs in terms of the agreement, but we should see him in training with us later this week.

“These things tend to happen, because even though all parties can be happy about the move, the wording has to be right when it comes to drawing up contracts and things like that.

“We won’t talk names until he’s actually here, but we don’t foresee any problems with it at this stage. Let’s remind ourselves there are never any guarantees, but we think it should all be fine with this one.”

“I’ve said before that we’ve missed out on a number of targets, but we’re on the first step in a process of restructuring and reorganising this club,” he continued. “Of course it isn’t ideal, but it’s the reality of the situation we’re in and we have to accept that and work within it.

“It’s about getting the best out of the resources we have, but still having the ability to pay the wages every month. That’s a responsibility the club takes very seriously.

“There’s always a frustration because I’d have loved to have worked with a full group from day one, there’s no doubt about that. We all know we’ve missed out on a number of targets, but I’m realistic and I know where we are as a club at this moment in time.

“We understand the situation and that’s why we’ll keep pursuing the targets which fit what we’re trying to achieve.”

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On the players already in the building, he said: “I think we’ve recruited well because these lads aren’t just good players, they’re good people.

“That goes a long way in football, so we’re happy with that. Defensively we have experience mixed with players who want to improve and learn, and we have people who can do their jobs competently.

“We’re really happy with the current three midfield players we have, but we still want to add another two to that. I’ve said a number of times that I’m really pleased with the nucleus of the group, but to be a team that challenges at the top end of the table it will be decided by goals.

“If we can score the necessary goals to win tight games it will push us on to where we need to be, and that’s why the next couple of signings in that area are crucial. We know we need a couple more strikers, but we have a good platform and hopefully our targets will come to fruition in the very near future.

“Until we get the final pieces of our jigsaw I can understand why people won’t feel that we’re genuine contenders at this moment in time. If you look at the DNA of success, it’s generally built around stability in a club.

“The research over the last seven years suggests that clubs who achieve have stability in a lot of areas, especially within the playing staff, where you can start to build a culture.

“I think we’ve had the highest turnover of players this summer, so there are a lot of things that would suggest we might not be the favourites, but that sits ok with us. It means that we have something to prove. It’s up to us show that we want to prove people wrong.”

On the injury situation with striker Hallam Hope, he said: “He’s been out on the grass, but he hasn’t been involved with the main squad at this moment in time.

“We believe he’ll return to training on Thursday, but we’ll have to monitor that as the days go by. You can just never tell with these types of injury, but the scan suggested that he should be ok come the weekend. We’ll just have to wait and see.”


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