“We know the task ahead of us and we’ve got to step up to it…”
Head Coach Mark Bonner addressed the importance of strengthening his group so that Cambridge United can attack the remaining 20 games of the Sky Bet League One season.
Sitting in 22nd, the U’s remain winless in 2023, with another challenge awaiting them as they prepare to take on a Lincoln City side who are yet to lose a game at Sincil Bank in the league this season.
Needing to roll their sleeves up and battle for every single one of the 60 points that are now up for grabs, the boss hopes momentum is just around the corner.
“What we certainly need is an ability to be different and do things differently, and create an almost fresh team over the next 20 games and a fresh energy about how we go about things, because we know the task ahead of us and we’ve got to step up to it.
“For lots of us, it’s the first time of experiencing this period, but it will come around again, as will the good bits. That’s just I think the cycle of football and the way that those things work."
Analysing the hosts, the Imps have drawn 12 of their 25 matches, with ten of those all coming on home soil. Tough to break down, Bonner envisages a demanding afternoon.
“They’re a very, very hard team to beat by the statistics they’ve shown, they’ve had some brilliant results. They’re unbeaten at home but have drawn the majority of them so we know that’s a tough place, we know defensively they’ve made themselves hard to beat and we know they’ve got a couple of really lively and bright attackers that can cause anyone a problem.
“I think it will be a good game, challenging, as they all are at the moment, but we’ll go there and give it a great shot and see what we can come up with. We know we’ve got to respond and we expect one from last weekend so let’s see what we can do… with a fresh impetus around the team.
“We know we've got some tough games (coming up) but it’s a game we want to have a right go at and make sure we take something from.”
In his last press conference before the window slams shut on Tuesday evening, Bonner stated that more potential deals are creeping closer.
“Next week we’d expect certainly one more. We would never say never (to the possibility of more than one more signing), if something comes up that really gives us a chance of strengthening, then we will do it.
“We knew in the summer with the window that we had, we were adding potential to the squad rather than starters in a lot of cases, and obviously we’ve got to try and strengthen the team now.
“With the way we’re looking with the team, if we can add what we want to add, we are probably going to develop a number of different ways of playing and shapes to play.”
After Saikou Janneh departed for AFC Wimbledon earlier in the week on loan, the boss mentioned the possibility of further outgoings in order to aid the development of some of his players.
“We’re not in need of the resources and the money, so we don’t need to be selling people to pay wage bills like we have in recent times. We’re in a fantastic position with the owners and the stability that they’ve given us.
“Obviously if we see that it’s the right thing for one or two others to go out on loan to get more games, then we may do that, but that probably won’t be until really late in the window once we’ve completed all of our ins.”