Salford City return to Grimsby Town’s Blundell Park on Saturday as attentions turn back to Sky Bet League Two.
Wednesday’s Carabao Cup defeat at Everton was a monumental evening for the Club, despite defeat to the Premier League side, but by most means The Ammies gave a good account of themselves.
It is in the league though where Graham Alexander’s side will be judged and scored when May comes around, so on that front Saturday’s result will be more important and have a greater meaning.
There were four changes at Goodison Park and the same squad is expected to be available on Saturday, but the Gaffer believes it should be no problem even with Grimsby having the whole week to prepare.
“We always want to keep focused on the game ahead and at the start of the week it was on the Everton game which, after looking back at it, I thought the players did excellent.
“Our attention turns to Grimsby now which it did virtually straight after the game on Wednesday. To go there and get three points, it’s a tough venue to go to so we have to be prepared in the best way.
“I know the boys are a fit group of players so there will be no after effects from Wednesday going into tomorrow’s game.”
“Going into the league we’re still looking for those same attributes and qualities that we showed on Wednesday, we can’t come off that at all; if we think we can come off it 2% we’ll be badly mistaken so the biggest thing for us is to get our mind set on the same sort of approach as we had on Wednesday.
“They’ll still be a very hard working team that has quality within it and can still beat anybody, so we have to go in there with the respect of this division, understand what it’s about and we have to work.
“We cannot go into any game this season and be outworked by the opposition, I’d be devastated if that ever happened.”
The Mariners are now in their fifth season in League Two after returning from the National League in 2015-16, but they are yet to achieve a top-half finish and last season ended in 15th with 47 points; three behind ourselves.
After the departure of Michael Jolley it was Ian Holloway who took the hot seat and he was unveiled to the Blundell Park crowd at our New Year’s Day game at Grimsby. His infectious enthusiasm brought Grimsby together for the second half of the season after a slump in results, and there is optimism for a top half finish or better in Lincolnshire.
Ahkeem Rose’s late goal secured victory for Grimsby in our last meeting, but the Gaffer is hopeful of an improved performance from a different-looking Salford side.
“It was the start of the New Year we played there and it was a tough game, I think Ian Holloway had just taken over so I don’t think he was actually in charge of the game but obviously there was a lot of excitement around the place and it was a disappointing result for us so it’s certainly one we need to improve on and that’s what we’ll be looking to do.
“But it’s probably a new-look team really from the team that played that day to the one that will play on Saturday for us so we’ll go there and try to get in the rhythm of the league now.”
HOW TO WATCH
Saturday’s match will be available to view online in the UK and overseas*. Click here for more information about streaming the game.
Zarah Connolly will be live in the TalkTalk Studio with a guest before the match (from 14:30) and at half time, and you can watch for free on YouTube, Facebook or Twitter.
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