Prior to United’s clash with Morecambe on Saturday (9th April), assistant head coach Gary Waddock sat down with local media…
“Morecambe have had a positive upturn on results recently, so they’ll arrive at the Abbey on Saturday in a real good frame of mind and in high spirits. Derek [Adams] has gone in there and has got them winning games.
“They’re in a better mental space now, and Derek will demand that of them if they are to get over the line this season.
“Stockton’s done an incredible job there in terms of his goal return, but goals haven’t really been a problem for the club, they’re stronger now in defence than they were in the first part of the season.
“Morecambe have played and beat a team on Tuesday who were fighting for promotion, it just shows that anything can happen in this league. There’s still so much to play for and they’ve shown a lot of fight and desire to pick up the points to keep themselves out the bottom four.
“We know how hard of a game it is going to be against a team that have picked up two wins on the bounce, so we’ll have to be at out best, which we will be.”
On making changes to the team…
“We want players to come into the team and give a good account of themselves first and foremost, but of course a lot of these players haven’t played regular first team football so there is that element of rustiness, but the opportunity is there for them to prove they can contribute to the team going forward.
“It will be the case on Saturday too, changes will be made again. The players coming in don’t have to be the best players on the pitch but we want to see signs that they can improve themselves and us.
“Between now and the end of the season we need to have a look at Lewis [Simper], he’s a good footballer and he’s played and impressed at a good level out on loan, so now’s the opportunity to see if he can make the step up to the first team.
“We’ve had to rotate the squad throughout the season, whether that’s been because of injury or suspension, so it’s a nice situation now to be in where we can make changes off our own accord.”
“Jack [Iredale] has returned a little ahead of schedule, which is a massive credit to the medical team as well as Jack himself for getting back so quickly.
“It’s difficult for him having to get back up to speed and fitness, especially when there’s players lurking ready for the opportunity to impress the manager.
“We’ll have a look at both Liam [O’Neil] and Shilow [Tracey] between now and the end of the week to see if they can come in for Saturday.
On Gary’s own road to recovery and getting back on the training ground…
“It was very hard, you know you want to be on the training ground with all the players, but when I was at home I was constantly on WyScout and the laptop all day, as well as watching all the games.
“I was in contact with Bonz all the time getting all the information, but I am just so pleased now to be back and amongst it again.