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Hurst previews Plymouth clash

3 October 2019

Manager Paul Hurst has provided the latest team news ahead of the Iron’s League Two clash at Plymouth Argyle on Saturday.

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The boss expects to welcome Kevin van Veen back to the squad for the longest away trip of the season, after the Dutchman missed out through a rib injury when United faced Bradford City last weekend.

Elsewhere, the boss said there were doubts over some unnamed players.

He told iFollow Iron: “We’ve had some illness flying around the group, so have a few doubts from that point of view. We’ll have some decisions to make and you might see that come Saturday when the squad’s named. We’ll see how a couple are and then make that decision.

“Kev seems to be better and is one who should come back into the squad.”

Lee Novak returned to action as a substitute last weekend following six weeks out with an ankle injury, and the boss added: “He enjoyed being back out there and he’s worked hard in training this week. Is he 100 per cent ready to start? In an ideal world, he’d have had some minutes in a game or another week of training but I think if you ask him he’ll say he’s ready to go. That’s something which comes into our thinking.

“We were disappointed that the Under-23s away clash at Mansfield was called off because we’d have had a few players involved in that game who would have benefited from the minutes again. We managed to get them in for training with the group though.”

One player who definitely misses out is midfielder Matthew Lund, who is suspended for the next three games following his red card against Bradford last weekend.

Hurst added: “He’s been an ever-present for me in the league and will be missed. He’s clearly a goal threat from midfield and one of the experienced heads we have.

“Regan Slater and Levi Sutton are the obvious options to come in (to that position). Levi would have benefitted from more minutes against Mansfield but I’m sure whoever steps up will do what they can to impress. Lundy is missing for three games, so the opportunity is there to stake a claim.”

Previewing the clash against the Pilgrims, he continued: “We’re looking forward to the game, albeit a long journey there, where we will face a team who are very good in possession and who I expect to be up there come the end of the season. We’ll have to be at our best.

“They had a good win last weekend at Mansfield, and showed a willingness that the manager (Ryan Lowe) spoke about in the second-half. They did start very well and were pre-season favourites to win promotion, partly because of the size of the club and also because Ryan won promotion last season and took players there with him who have recent experience of going up.

“We’ll have to be good at what we do and switched on at all times to take something from the game. There was a togetherness that will be needed again, and throughout the season. The players were excellent in their approach and work ethic (with ten men for more than 75 minutes last week), and in terms of the organisation too. We certainly need more of that moving forward.”

See much more from Paul Hurst, Lee Novak and Rory Watson on iFollow Iron. Click here to sign-up.

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