Manager Preview: Mossley [H]

First-team manager Danny Grainger says there are no easy games at this time of year, ahead of tonight’s match against Mossley.

It will be Reds’ fourth consecutive match at Borough Park and are looking to possibly extend their lead at the top of the table to 10 points.

On Saturday, Grainger’s men showed immense spirit to win 3-1 against Brighouse Town and the manager began by heaping praise on his team.

“As I said after the game, the character was there and this group never surprises me.

“A lot of teams would’ve not only drawn that game but they’d have lost that game.

“How they responded when it went to 1-1, it’s a credit to themselves.

“When you look at the game overall, there were lots of positives. The conditions sort of hampered us again but I felt in the first-half, we had three or four really good opportunities. Their goalkeeper made some great saves.

“I can only really remember one time Jim [Atkinson] was troubled. One ball shot past the post in the second-half and he didn’t have to work in the first.

“There were some times where we were a little bit under the cosh but they didn’t really create any chances where you’d say ‘he should’ve scored there.”

Onto tonight, and Mossley are one of four sides to have beaten Reds in the league this season, 2-0 back in September.

However, an Integro League Cup win in December means the sides are locked on one win each in their two meetings.

“They’ll come up here full of confidence and they’ll be pushing on to try and get a positive result,” said Grainger.

“Obviously, they’ve had a change of manager since they last played us in the cup. They’ll be itching to improve and impress the new manager.

“It’ll be a tough game. There’s no easy games at this time of year and we need make sure that we’re ready for that challenge and stand up to it.

“Whether we freshen things up or not, every lad involved will be expected to do a job.”

On the topic team selection, Grainger is confident in his all of his players if he decides to make changes.

“When you look at the way we play, I think it’s just about a continuation of that. We need to make sure we carry on the high-tempo aggression.

“Anybody who comes in should fit into that system and there shouldn’t be any difference really. The squad we’ve got now, I don’t think anybody really weakens the team.

“If anyone comes in, it’s a case of the stepping up and taking their opportunity.

“As I keep saying, I won’t pick the same team just for the sake of it. If it’s the right team, we’ll expect to get the result.

“Ruddy and I have been speaking since Saturday night and we need to make sure that, between us, we pick the right team to get us three points.”

Finally, the boss revealed to BBC Radio Cumbria pre-match on Saturday that he was considering signing a goalkeeper to add support for Jim Atkinson ahead of the run-in.

He revealed more speaking last night, saying: “It’s something we’re still talking about.

“There’s a couple of names who we’re sort of looking into but nothing concrete yet.”

“Worst case scenario, something does happen to Jim I’m more than confident of throwing one of our two reserve lads in and they’d do fine.

“They’ve been involved in senior football, so if we don’t get another experienced one in, then we’ve got a young lad who can step straight in.”

Kick-off tonight is 19:45. Please be aware of any pitch inspection announcements due to the wet weather.

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