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McCall discusses team news and previews Gillingham clash

6 December 2018

Manager Stuart McCall has revealed he has two fresh injury doubts ahead of the home clash with Gillingham this weekend, but insists he and the available players will just get on with the task in hand.

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8 December 2018

He didn’t reveal the names of the duo who he feels are unlikely to be involved, but will be boosted by the return of James Perch from a one-match suspension.

“It will be a challenge as all games are, but we’ve got to find a way to get the three points. We’ve done a lot of work this week on the training ground, though yet again we have a couple of lads missing who are major doubts, which is disappointing,” he told iFollow Iron.

“Once that whistle goes on Saturday at 3pm it’s about the people who are on the pitch and not those in the stands. it’s another game we’ve got to relish and have a go at it.

“In the last couple of games certain things have gone against us, for example Perchy’s probably harsh second yellow card put us down to ten men (at Southend) and then on Sunday (at Shrewsbury in the FA Cup) I don’t think the efforts of the players deserved to be defeated if I’m honest.

“In the opening minutes, Kyle (Wootton) went through. I’ve seen it again, it should be a red card (for Luke Waterfall, who brought down the Iron striker), I don’t know how a free-kick can be given the opposite way - it’s baffling and bizarre really. The only decision to be made really was whether it was a yellow or a red - watching it again I feel it was a red because it’s a goalscoring opportunity.

“The referee gave us a penalty late on, which I don’t think was the right decision either, but unfortunately we couldn’t take the chance.

“We’ve got to focus fully on the league now and start getting victories. We need the same effort and desire, added to a bit more quality, and you just sometimes need things to drop your way. When you’re in a bad run like we are though, you stick at it. We all have to work hard for each other, dig deep and get the best out of ourselves.

“It’s difficult when you don’t get the results that performances merit, but you have to stick at it.”

McCall spoke further about the two fresh injury doubts, and also discussed how Jordan Clarke and Funso Ojo are coming along in their returns from shoulder and hamstring injuries respectively.

He said: “We had a good session on Thursday morning but there are two major doubts, which puts a spanner in the works again. We’ll work with what we’ve got and we’ll be ready for Saturday when it comes.

“Jordan is back training with us - it’s not full contact but he’s out there. Funso is doing laps around the pitch too, while Butty (Lewis Butroid, who also has a hamstring injury) will be a few more weeks away yet.

“Hopefully Jordan will be back in full contact training at the beginning of next week. We have to be careful with Funso, but he’s up to about 60 per cent. Obviously with a hamstring, it’s when you extend and sprint that it becomes a problem. I don’t think we’ll see him on the grass in the next ten days but you never know, hopefully he might heal quickly.

“We need to get players back and we’ll get stronger, but while we’re waiting for that to happen it’s a chance for others to step in. Perchy is back from suspension, which helps us, because he can play in a variety of positions. We’re waiting for the two lads but will give them every chance to be available and then decide on the make-up of the team.”

Gillingham arrive at Glanford Park on the same amount of points as the Iron but ahead on goal difference. McCall knows it will be a challenge but his side will be ready for it.

He said: “Last season they came here and won 3-1. with (Tom) Eaves up top and he’s having a good season again. They have their strengths and weaknesses like everyone but it’s about us. They went to Portsmouth and won earlier in the season, and can be a really good side on their day. Likewise, we can be a really good team on our day. We’ll focus on what we do, how we go about our job, keep working hard for each other and doing the basics right. We have to keep at it and show a spirit that will help us get back to where we want to be.”

See much more from Stuart McCall, George Thomas and Matthew Lund on iFollow Iron. Click here to sign-up.

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