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Cox previews Newport clash, plus updates on McGahey, Dales and Green

10 September 2020

First team manager Neil Cox has previewed the League Two encounter with Newport County in an interview with iFollow Iron.

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After facing Port Vale and Lincoln City in the Carabao Cup first round and EFL Trophy Group Stages respectively this week, Cox has plenty of food for thought when it comes to team selection after numerous players impressed in the game time they were given.

He said: "We've been waiting for this for a long time now. The boys have trained really hard and they're all raring to go. The tempo of training has stepped up too.

"It was really sharp and intense on the training ground. We want them to work hard, but with a smile on their faces, which we have done this morning.

"We're looking forward to getting started and seeing how we hold ourselves this year.

"We have to be calm, relaxed and do the right things as a team and get results that way. It's not about individuals but everyone around the camp needing to work hard together.

"There are a lot of people who have put ideas into my head (in terms of selection). We'll be positive. It'll be a difficult game at home against a good side who are well-organised, fit and will provide a tough test. They'll always be a handful from set-plays so we'll have to make sure we're organised with those. They also move the ball around well from what I've seen in pre-season."

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12 September 2020

Harrison McGahey got his first game time since February in the game at Lincoln City in midweek, returning from a calf injury which meant he didn't get any match minutes in pre-season.

Cox continued: "Harrison will be in the squad but we have to make sure we look after him, and make sure we make the right decision on him. He was excellent on Tuesday, and trained again on Thursday morning, but we just have to be careful."

Providing an update on Andy Dales and Devarn Green, who came off in the game at the LNER Stadium, Cox said: "Dalesy has a dead leg and should be alright to be in the squad for Saturday.

"Dev's foot has swollen up a little bit so we have to be careful. I'm not sure he'll be available on Saturday which is a shame because he was excellent the other night, but he'll get himself fit and in the squad for the weeks to come. Hopefully he's only out a short period of time and back in the squad for next week."

He also confirmed Kevin van Veen is back with the players after undergoing a knee operation last Wednesday.

He said: "I've got everyone in together. I want a team spirit so everyone's in the meetings and I want them all to have their opinions. Kev's come back in with a smile on his face and I've told him I need him around the place because he's an experienced pro and if he can help the youngsters do well that's what we need.

"He's a little bit tender in his knee still and was on the bike on the training ground. We'll let the operation settle down for a couple of weeks and after that we'll know a little more (in terms of how long it will take him to return to action). Then it's about getting his fitness back and strength into the knee."

See much more from Neil Cox on iFollow Iron. If you're not a 12th Man member, click here to buy your £10 match pass for the Iron vs Newport County.

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