United had almost a full complement of players training ahead of the weekend trek to Crawley with just Danny Devine a concern as he continues to nurse a niggling hamstring problem, picked up during pre-season.
“Danny is the only real one missing, and I think Fish picked up a dead leg at Lancaster, but he isn’t available for this week anyway,” manager Chris Beech said. “It’s more precautionary with Danny because he was out for quite some time, and the physios tend to grade this type of thing these days.
“It’s a grade 1, which is three to seven days, but basically it’s a bit of fatigue and a bit of an uncomfortable feeling within what he had previously.
“It’s nothing like what happened last time, and he should be on the training pitch today and tomorrow, but in terms of being available to play I think we’ll have to give him extra time on top of that time, to make sure he’s feeling good.
“To be fair that’s what we did last time, it’s just that these things can happen, so we’ll look after him and get him back as soon as possible.”
And on what has been a week of hard work, with no midweek game to break the schedule, he commented: “We’ve actually trained very hard because having no game gave us an opportunity to do a bit more.
“A couple of the new lads were interviewed and they spoke about the fact that we’re training so fast that it’s taken them by surprise a little bit. It’s not a pre-season type week, but it’s definitely been harder because we had that chance to work people like Jordan Gibson, Jonathan Dinzeyi, Brad Young and Zach Clough, who have all missed little bits along the way. It’s been really good.
“We’ve had like a mini pre-season in terms of Monday and Tuesday. The boys trained very hard, they might have got a little bit of a shock after the weekend’s result, but it was important to do that.
“Zach’s missed a few weeks, Jordan and Jonathan have joined us, Brad, people like Lewi Bell haven’t had too much game time. I was desperate to get him on in the Papa John’s and it was unfortunate, as I told Lewi to come on, Danny lets me know he’s not feeling too clever.
“I didn’t want to put Lewi on at right-back. He would have done it anyway, but I want to try and get him further up the field, doing what he’s good at.
“It’s been good, because they’ve been able to train very hard, had a little bit of rest on Wednesday and today will go into concentrating on Crawley. We’ve all enjoyed and it and we’re looking forward to Saturday.”