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Salford City football Club

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Graham Alexander, Salford CitySalford City will be keen to keep up their current momentum when they visit Northampton Town on Saturday afternoon (KO 15:00).

Back-to-back wins for the first time in the EFL were confirmed with a 1-0 win against Cambridge last Saturday at The Peninsula Stadium.

Prior to that was a 3-0 win at Walsall, Salford’s first win on the road, and next up is another experienced league side in Northampton.

The Cobblers are the joint-most successful team in terms of promotions from the fourth tier having risen from the division on seven occasions (Southend being the other team to have done it seven times).

However after their most recent relegation from League One in 2017-18, they finished 15th in the league last season. They come into this game without a league win in their last four outings and on the back of a 3-0 defeat at Scunthorpe United which was “not good enough” according to manager Keith Curle.

While expecting a response from Northampton, Salford manager Graham Alexander feels The Ammies are starting to find the consistency he has asked of them.

“The players are really understanding now what we want performance wise, they’re taking it into their training, we’re working a lot on what we need to do. 

“Like I said a couple of weeks ago this is a long-term job, and project, it’s not chasing the next result so we have to continue to be persistent with the work we’re doing with them and to be fair the players are getting more used to it. 

“Now we’ve got a settled squad so to speak, apart from Pondy being away with international and a couple of niggles, but the majority of the squad has been the same for the last couple of weeks and I think consistency is the key really, it’s what we’re looking for and if you’ve got a consistent squad to pick from, and you train in a consistent way, I think it’ll show in our performances ultimately.

“So that’s the work we have to continue with and, as they always do, the players are always approaching it in the right way, they’re superb to work with and they want to do the best for themselves and for the club. 

“We have to continue that on Saturday but we know it’ll be a tough game as it always is, a different opponent again, a new opponent for us, but the players are in a good place and we’re looking forward to it.

“The experience of these clubs, it’s the norm for them being in the Football League and playing at a higher level than this. They’ll have players that have done the same, and obviously the manager as well. 

“But we have experience throughout the squad as well and obviously myself ,Chris and Nashy have got a lot of league experience.

“It’s just about a feeling more than anything that we belong, that we can compete, that we can win, but that takes time, you can’t just win like we did first game of the season then that’s us, we’re settled and we know the level that we’re playing at; it takes time to adjust and to find what’s needed to win. 

“Going into the game on Saturday we know Northampton are coming off a difficult result for them last week, but we’ve shown ourselves we can respond to that so I expect they’ll be looking to respond, but it’s up to us to keep improving and we need to keep improving.”

Back-to-back away games

Adam Rooney, Salford CityFollowing the trip to The PTS Academy Stadium, Salford are back on the road on Tuesday evening when they visit Mansfield Town but the Gaffer says focus is completely on Saturday until after the game.

“We obviously plan logistically about the three games coming up because we have to put plans in place like travel and so forth, but do I know my team for Tuesday? No. Do I know it for next Saturday? No. 

“Even though we talk about the long term, how we play, when we come down to focusing on games we focus on the next one so for me nothing will change in the lead up to Saturday’s game, and as soon as that’s finished we start concentrating on the next one. 

“We analyse what we’ve done in one game, take it forward into the next and try to improve. For me it’s important we keep trying to improve the performances and try and get a consistent level of performance where the players know inside-out what’s needed, what they need to do as an individual for the team, and just replicate what they do in training. 

“That’s the test that we’ve faced, I feel, this season so far, replicating how we train and taking it forward into games but there has been difficult circumstances to deal with along the way.

“Like I say we are trying to calm everything down and stem a steady line with what we’re doing, and I think that will pay dividends ultimately in the end.”

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