The 2020-21 season rolls on for Salford City who head back to Cumbria on Saturday to visit Barrow AFC.
The Ammies haven’t travelled too well in the last couple of months with October’s 1-0 win at Stevenage the last time Salford won a league game away from home.
Wednesday night’s defeat at Carlisle United was the latest in that run, but there were positive signs late on for Salford including a first goal for Di’Shon Bernard.
A month into his tenure, Richie Wellens says he is still getting to know his squad but a time will come when he has to choose some options, with January looming.
“I’m learning all the time and I want to make sure I give everyone opportunities to show what they can do.
“I think there’s only now really Tom Elliott who hasn’t had a start that can say he hasn’t truly had an opportunity, so again it’s about me giving everyone a chance then I’ll be making a decision on who we can take forward and who we can’t.
“Any single game in this league, if you don’t do the basics right then you will struggle. You only have to see that the other night, we didn’t do the basics right at Carlisle and we lose the game.
“We can only affect what we can do, and I think the players have it in their locker to really up their game and we’ll be looking to do that Saturday.”
Brandon Thomas-Asante serves the second of his three-match ban, while the game comes too soon for Richie Towell and James Wilson on their returns from injury. Darron Gibson remains out for a while after his injury at Port Vale.
Champions of the National League in 2019-20, Barrow were handed a blow in the summer when Ian Evatt decided to leave for Bolton Wanderers. In came David Dunn and the former midfielder has established a platform he will be hoping Barrow can build upon.
While their current predicament seems gloomy – 21st, a point outside the play-offs and without a win in seven – it’s not quite the full picture. On closer inspection, despite only registering two wins they have drawn seven games and scored 20 goals, bettered only in the bottom half by Oldham Athletic. However on the same note they have conceded 23 which is third to Southend (29) and The Latics (28) in the bottom half.
They haven’t been outplayed, the stats show that they have been in games, and Wellens is expecting a thorough test from his former manager Dunn’s side.
“[They’ll be] committed, a good footballing team.
“I know David Dunn really well, I played against Dunny a lot of times and I worked for him when he was a manager.
“They play some good football, whenever you play a promoted team they try and use that momentum to then move forward and go again so it’ll be a difficult game.
“Like I say we want to concentrate on us, we want to make sure that we’re really, really at it, and we’re going to need to be against a decent team.”
Matt Green and Ibou Touray both scored on our last visit to Barrow in December 2018, but a last minute goal saw the Bluebirds win 3-2.
HOW TO WATCH
Saturday’s clash at the Progression Solicitors Stadium is available to watch online for £10 in the UK and £7 abroad.