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Club News

MANAGER: We have to serve up football the fans want to see

Steven Pressley ahead of tonight's Forest Green Rovers

17 September 2019

United boss Steven Pressley spoke to us ahead of tonight’s game against Forest Green Rovers.

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“Forest Green are a team that in my opinion have improved year on year under Mark Cooper’s management,” he said. “They currently sit third in the table and are a team that have a definite style of play.

“That is reflected in the fact they have the highest passing stats in League Two this season thus far. They have also improved from a defensive perspective and currently have conceded the second lowest amount of goals.

“These statistics give an indication that tonight’s game will prove a real test, but it’s certainly one we look forward to.”

“They’re a team who have mostly been together for a number of years,” he added. “They’re really effective in what they do because they’ve been building on their foundations for a long time. It will be a real challenge for us.

“We’re going into the game in a situation where our away form is better than our home form, and that’s something we’re looking to improve. We want the crowds to come back in their numbers, but they only do that if we serve up the football they want to see. We have to do that tonight.

“Brunton Park has to be a place where teams come with a degree of fear and we have to win games and play in the right manner to create that.”

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On the injury situation, he said: “Canice Carroll should be back and available. Unfortunately Stefan Scougall will be still be missing, and we know about Kelvin [Etuhu], but other than that we have a clean bill of health.

“Obviously it was nice for us to see Hallam Hope back on Saturday. I think sometimes when I talk about players people think I’m just saying things, but I can honestly say when I spoke to him last Thursday that there was a real energy about him again.

“It’s been a good thing he’s got away and got his head together. He’s been in good spirits and when he came on at the weekend you saw a Hallam Hope with energy. Hopefully we’ll start to see the best of him again now.”

With the three points making it two wins, a draw and just one defeat from the last four league outings, he commented: “I said this at the weekend, and a couple of senior players reiterated this in the dressing room – we can’t continuously take a step forward and then a step back.

“We are a new team, I understand that, and we’re growing all the time, trying to improve all the time, but the one thing is when you have disappointment, you have to refocus on doing what you’re good at and what you’re team was built to do.

“We can be a good side when we play like we did on Saturday, but it takes a maximum effort, and that’s what I require from them every day. We have to continue that. If we are a team that wants to progress and achieve this season you can’t just do it one in three, it has to be relentless, every week. That’s the standards we’re trying to set.”

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