Head Coach Stephen Crainey spoke to the press on Thursday afternoon and previewed his side’s Sky Bet League One clash against Crewe Alexandra at the Mornflake Stadium.
Crainey and the Cods will be looking to get back to winning ways at the weekend, taking all the confidence from the two weeks of training during the international break, which saw four players feature for their countries on multiple occasions.
Here’s what Stephen had to say in his pre-match interview:
On Crewe Alexandra…
“It’s going to be a tough game; I’ve watched their last few games to see what their strengths and weaknesses are, as you do as a manager, and in they were right in the games against Wigan [Athletic] and Bolton [Wanderers]. There wasn’t much in either game and they ended up losing both so it’ll be tough, as every game is in League One.
“We’ve got eight cup finals that we are looking forward to and that run starts with a tough task against Crewe. They are in a similar position to us so they will be desperate for points and will be trying to win the game, much like ourselves, so we are under no illusions, it will be a tough game but one that we hope we can get three points from. You need to go and earn the right to go and win games of football and we will have to do that against Crewe.
“It was pleasing not having a fixture and looking at the table to see us stay on the right side of the line. We had a close eye on the games so, at five o’clock, we were pleased to stay out of it, and we know that it’s still in our own hands anyway. We’re confident we can win games of football from now until the end of the season and we want that run to start on Saturday.”
On taking positives from the Doncaster draw…
“It was nice to keep a clean sheet last time out, but it was disappointing not to win it. I’ll be honest, I didn’t think we were great on the day against Doncaster and had played better in the previous games, which we had lost, but that just shows you what football is like at times. Sometimes you don’t get what you deserve, and I feel like that’s what has happened over the last five or six games.
“We need to keep maintaining these good intensity levels and hopefully that luck can turn, starting Saturday. I think it’s going to be a tight game on Saturday; ideally, we would like to go there and win the game comfortably, but it’s going to be tough. Regardless of how we do, I want to be sitting with three points added to our tally at five o’clock, but Crewe will be thinking the exact same.
“Some of the players from the bench at Doncaster will need more training and game time to get up to speed naturally, but we are in a position now where we need points on the board so I’ll try and pick the best team I can tomorrow to go and try to win the game on Saturday.”
On the injuries in the squad…
“It’s taking a little bit longer than we’d hoped for with some of the lads so it looks like it will be the same squad that featured against Doncaster two weeks ago. A couple of them have been making slight progress, but this game is going to come a bit too soon for them. Dan Batty, Josh Harrop, and Anthony Pilkington are doing light work, but they aren’t going to be ready for the weekend.
“We’ve got a mixture in the group of young players, and still have some experience available so I will try and pick a team that can win the game against Crewe. We know it’s going to be a tough game, and a difficult surface to play on as well, so we know t will be hard but it’s one we are looking forward to.
“I want to pick from as many players as possible to win a game of football and I’ve not been able to do that which has been a bit frustrating, but the reality is that is the way the cookie crumbles at times. We go with the squad we’ve got available and that’s what we are going to do with the remaining games of the season.”