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Pemberton: "We’re not going down there to sit back"

16 January 2020

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Ahead of Saturday’s trip down to Eastleigh, John Pemberton addressed the media and started off by explaining that the squad are in a positive mood after the caretaker boss has had a full two weeks on the training pitch with his players.

“It’s gone alright,” said Pemberton.

“They’ve all worked hard in training. We’ve had quite a bit of work to do but they seem in good spirits.

“They want to be better and there’s a good attitude amongst them.

“There’s a good spirit amongst them considering where we are.

“We’ve been organising them and probably making things a bit simpler.

“I’ve put some ideas over about what we want to do in possession and certainly to make the job easier out of possession.

“We’ve changed the dynamics a bit so they are working at a higher intensity just to try and make them a little sharper.”

Young right-back Jordan Cropper was signed by the Spireites last week, joining the club on loan from Premier League side Burnley for the remainder of the season.

The caretaker manager claimed that the 20-year-old will be a good acquisition and explained that Cropper is rated highly by Spireite legend and Burnley boss Sean Dyche.

“He’s a player they think highly of,” he stated.

“We needed a right-back and he’s a crosser and gets forward well.

“He’s a young player but he’s ready to take the next step.

“He comes highly recommended and I’ve seen him play.

“He’s a good lad and he’s a good size so he’ll help us defensively.

“The lads have embraced him and he’s been very good in training.”

Eastleigh came from behind at the Proact to claim a 2-1 win back in October and the Spitfires sit in 16th position in the National League table.

Pemberton was adamant that Saturday will be another challenge for his team as they go in search of back-to-back victories, by saying: “It’s going to be tough, they are a strong side.

“They’ve got some experience and they are a big side that are very good from set-pieces.

“They do try to play football.

“They are all tough games in the position that we are in.

“What we’ve got to do is take some confidence out of the Sutton game and try to get us organised as best we can and attack the game properly.

“Every game I’m trying to win; we’ve got to win football matches.

“We’re not going down there to sit back, we’re going down there to win the football match.”

Anthony Gerrard and Josef Yarney have been unavailable for the last couple of fixtures after the pair have been struggling with hamstring issues.

However, Pemberton had positive news on the defenders by revealing that both are in contention for Saturday and confirmed that Matt Tootle is back in training.

“We’ve got a few people that have been injured back on the grass,” explained the caretaker manager.

“Gez (Gerrard) has trained with us this week and Yarney has been back in the last few days training.

“He’s (Yarney) looked okay but we just need to see where he is because he’s done his calf before so he’s got a bit of a history with his hamstring.

“Tootle is back on the grass but he’s a bit longer term and obviously we’ll have to manage him properly.”

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