With hardly any time to draw breath United are back in league action tomorrow as they host Oldham here at Brunton Park.
Manager Chris Beech gave us his thoughts ahead of the game.
“Every league game is a big game so it’s something to really look forward to,” he said. “I can’t wait. I’ll be looking for us to get out of the blocks quicky again.
“I’ll say this, and I’ve said it before, I always want to start a game well. Like anything, going on any journey or race you want to start well, but I also want to finish stronger.
“I want all of it, and when it comes it comes. If you take your foot off the gas and step back at any point, you’re just relying on more luck factors. Within that you’re just relying on a referee’s decision or some action that may or may not take place from an opponent taking advantage or not.
“I want us to try and stay on it, but the big plan isn’t to knock somebody out in the first 20 minutes and not play for the rest of the game. We want to start very quick, very well, but we also want the middle and end bits to be very strong too.
“That’s just football. We know where we want to be and we just need to control it better when we’re on our front foot.”
On what we can expect from Oldham, he told us: “They’re very dangerous because they can play with no fear and they can play freely.
“Harry [Kewell] will want his team to be more consistent, but so does every manager. They've got a lot of very good technical players, they can drop the shoulder to score great goals and we’re well aware of that. We’re definitely preparing to play a team that has some real good individual attributes.
“We know what they’re about. They’ve scored four goals against us in two games, so they’ve got definite attributes to do very well. The equalising goal in the league game was some finish. They have four or five players who can score goals like that.
“They can be quite quiet and can end up scoring spectacular goals, or they can be right at it and playing freely with no pressure in terms of how they’re playing. They are unpredictable. What I do know is Oldham can definitely score great goals and beat teams in our league without a shadow of a doubt.”
“As for ourselves, I don’t think we’ve shown much inconsistency,” he told us. “We were slow-starting, then got going, then we were hit by what we were hit by.
“Now we’re in this position to be playing again, we’re getting back to consistent behaviours. If we repeat what we had and did on Tuesday on a regular basis we’ll be the better side on points, and that’s what I’m looking forward to.
“The lads have been tremendous and improved since we’ve got going again. It’s very exciting, very good. We just need to clean up a little bit, like you do in any job. I’m very excited of what the lads did and very proud because we have been put in a unique position.
“But that’s the past now and we’ve got opportunities in front of us. Obviously we wanted the points to match the recent performances.
"It’s not just the supporters who are disappointed, we are, I am, the players are in terms of not being able to share with them, but we understand too that we have a responsibility to try and give them something to watch and cheer about from afar.
“I thank them for that support. Support comes in many different facets, whether it’s me as a manager to a player, whether it’s supporters to a team, whether it’s staff to supporting our way, my way, support comes in many different ways.
“It’s very easy to support things that are going so easy, and that’s in all different parts of life. What we’ve got to do is make sure we do what’s true to what we are, stick to our traits and enjoy that support we get.
“I feel we deserve that but we also understand that we represent our community and, like anything, it’s very rare for a footballer to play his whole career at a club, or a manager stay at one club his whole career. But for a supporter it’s their club and we have to understand we have to represent, share something and give everything we can on the pitch for them.”
The Saturday fixture sees a return of popular attacking midfielder Nicky Adams, who joined the Latics from Northampton during the January transfer window.
“I first crossed paths with Nicky at Bury,” he revealed. “He was an 18-year-old lad who … I remember my first week, because he was a third-year scholar at Bury. Nicky always has that lovely smile on his face, but in one of my first training sessions as my first full-time job, I sent him off the pitch and told him to go and run round the first-team pitch, for his cheek.
“He’s got a chance to think about what he’s just done, and if he comes back and ends up apologising I’ll allow him to continue to train as a young teenage football player. He was disappointed he wasn’t training with the first team at 18, he’s gone mumbling off, wobbling that head of his.
“By the time he’s gone round Bury’s first-team pitch, and the manager’s going ‘what the bloody hell are you doing over here Nicky,’ he said ‘well your new youth team manager’s sent me over here.’ By the time he came back round he said ‘I’m really sorry Chris, is it alright if I join back in.’
So I know Nicky from being a young boy. His dad’s followed his career, great bloke, really good player, he’s had a fantastic career and he’s looking to continue that. He stated publicly that he’s moved to Oldham to be nearer his family, but he did ever so well at Northampton.
“The type of lad Nicky is, he did it in his interview when Northampton got promoted, he felt as he did with the rest of his teammates that even though at the time with Carlisle they had a massive finance to try and support promotion at that point, with Keith, that he and his fellow teammates felt like they’d let the club and Keith down.
“He was so pleased for Keith getting promoted at Northampton. I remember seeing that Sky Sports interview, and he was also digging his chairman out asking for a bit more cash. That’s Nicky Adams.”