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MANAGER: They're going to be like new signings

Paul Simpson with an injury update

4 March 2022

There was good news for stopper Magnus Norman this week as he returned to training following a back spasm problem which had ruled him out of the last two games.

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“He’s ok, he’s trained, and I think it’s just one of those things we’ll have to manage,” manager Paul Simpson explained at his Thursday press conference. “He wants to be involved, he wants to show us what he’s about, and the way to do that is to be involved and pushing Mark.

“I’m led to believe Joe Senior’s operation went well, and Kelvin [Mellor] is still a few weeks away. When I spoke to Kelvin the other day we were being told early April.

“Gime Toure is trying to build up his work, so if we can have him fit and ready for the last 10 games of the season that’ll be good.

“These are going to be like new signings coming into the building, and I don’t know what they’ll be like, but they’ll add to the group.”

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Edging closer to a return are winger Brennan Dickenson and defender Rod McDonald, who were both back out on the grass this week.

“Rod and Brennan joined in training today [Thursday] in a small group that went out for a session,” he explained. “The plan is to build them up and give them more match minutes.

“Looking further ahead we have the Cumberland Cup game on 22 March against Carlisle City, so if they haven’t had minutes by then we could use that game because I see that as a really good opportunity for them.

“I think it’s really important to get minutes out on the grass so there will be some pro’s who will play in that.

“By then we’re coming into the important part of the season and I would imagine all of our players are going to be needed, so they’ve got to be ready to compete if they’re called upon.”

As revealed on Thursday, Geoff Haugh is back in the building to assist with medical matters, and we wondered if any other additions to the backroom were expected.

“No, I don’t expect any,” he responded. “I don’t see there being anything else. We’ve got a really good staff.

“I’m really surprised and pleasantly surprised with the work ethic the staff have got. They do some really good work. They’ve impressed me so far, hopefully it carries on that way.”

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