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Hill previews Iron's return to action at Stevenage

6 December 2021

First team manager Keith Hill has spoken to the media ahead of his side's trip to take on Stevenage on Tuesday night.

Following 10 days without a game, United head to the Lamex Stadium looking to get three important League Two points against Paul Tisdale's side.

Hill told iFollow Iron: "It's been hard work and the players have worked exceptionally hard in the pursuit of trying to improve and give ourselves a better opportunity to perform and get three points.

"We were disappointed to be involved in the FA Cup second round but we've been planning and preparing the players for the Stevenage game, but also scratching up and developing the players to the style that we want to play at, and the demands that the game has.

"We're going through processes all the time and constantly reminding the players what they have to do in and out of possession. The 'mind bomb' that you plant in the players' brains does grow and then it turns into a positive and they become stronger, more robust and take on board the messages.

"We still know what we need to do and the hard work has to continue, while the belief and perseverance has to remain. We've got to make sure we're as well prepared as we can be physically, tactically and football-wise for the opponents we play on Tuesday."

Talking about the opponents in midweek, Hill added: "I thought Stevenage were excellent in the second half of last season and went through a rich vein of form. They have a very good squad of players and a good manager but they just haven't produced this season.

"However, we have to work with our group of players and the way we can affect opponents. I see every day as an opportunity to improve our prospects and remain in League Two.

"I have to change the cycle of the way things have been done and that will take time, but I have to make sure we pick up the right points irrespective of the team. This week it's Stevenage and I will go into whatever game preparing and planning to win that game, We put the players under enormous stress in training so it becomes easier for them to make positive decisions in matches. The harder you work the luckier you get."

Hill confirmed striker Ryan Loft and defender Mason O'Malley are both fit and available for selection, while goalkeeper Rory Watson has been training for most of the past week and should be back fit and available.

"Obviously we have to take into consideration today and tomorrow, but at this moment in time we're looking quite healthy," Hill added.

Hill also confirmed goalkeeper Kieran O'Hara is now back with Burton Albion following his emergency loan and thanked him, the Brewers and the EFL for their help and co-operation.

He also confirmed midfielder Alex Kenyon faces three-to-four weeks out with a groin problem picked up against Bradford City.

"He'll be able to do lots of work that will make him stronger, more robust, and ready for getting back on the training pitch and into the matchday squad," he said.

See much more from Keith Hill and Myles Hippolyte on iFollow Iron.


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