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Curle's Thoughts Ahead Of Accrington Cup Clash

24 August 2021

© Eddie Garvey

Latics welcome Sky Bet League One outfit Accrington Stanley to Boundary Park in the second round of the Carabao Cup and Head Coach Keith Curle provided his thoughts ahead of the encounter.

After a frustrating start to the campaign, the gaffer remains upbeat on the situation and strongly believes that the players mindset and work ethic is vital for them to change their fortunes.

“I understand what the players are going through at the moment, we need a win. It's vital that we keep the mentality of working hard and things will change.

“On Saturday, there was nothing in the game and all of a sudden they win a penalty which kills the momentum and then a shot through a crowd of bodies squeezes into the bottom corner.

“We had a good reaction from the players, and we made a tactical change at half-time which gave us a foothold in the game, but we needed to get our goal earlier in order to get something from the match.

“In all the defeats so far, we've lost by one goal, so we aren't getting rolled over, but the way to change it is by working harder and trusting the process and values that we have in place." He added.

"Confidence is a word that gets used in football by players and coaches but we must change it into a physical form so what exactly is confidence, where do you get it from, how'd you lose it, where does it go, how'd you get it back and how'd you keep it?

“The answer is about what you do in terms of working hard, repeatedly doing the right things at the right times which will give you insurance that what you're doing is correct day in, day out and we’ll get our rewards."

Stanley enter the match on the back of two back-to-back one-nil victories in the third-tier and John Coleman’s side have earned the reputation of being resolute and hard to beat.

"Any result that you get against Accrington, you have to earn. They're a very honest football club with very honest staff and they have very good players who buy into the club's identity.

‘In possession and out of possession they all know their individual roles so in order to beat them you have to thoroughly battle against them and earn the victory."

Harry Vaughan and Junior Luamba thoroughly impressed after coming off the bench at the weekend and they will be looking to cement their names into the starting XI tonight.

"They're members of the first-team squad and they're learning their trade whilst getting important game time. Although just because it's the Carabao Cup doesn't mean that we have to blood the youngsters, I'm going to put a team out that I think is going to be competitive so if they're in it then that's excellent and they will have exceptions upon them with specific roles and responsibilities.

“The same applies to Will Sutton, even though he's out on loan to further enhance his development, and Vani Da Silva, another young player who's got ability and pace with bravery on the ball and he possesses dynamics so that's why they've joined the first-team ranks."

Latics will still be without several key personal for the cup tie and Curle is looking for the players available to show grit and desire to put on a performance.

"We're thin on the ground and down to the bare bones, but we'll still be competitive. We've got to have that attitude and mentality of 'it is what it is' and we must deal with it.

“Sure, we've got a few bodies that aren't playing, however, every team will go through that this season whether that be suspensions, injuries or loss of form so we've got to be strong and, importantly, we've still got a competitive team which is testament to the squad."

Whilst supporters were vital during the match against Tranmere Rovers and the Head Coach is eager to get them on board with what he’s trying to build at the club.

"I understand the frustration that the supporters have at the moment, but I know that they'll get on board with what we're trying to do when we get that result again.

“As soon as we get that result it's that understanding from the group to think 'what's kept them on board?' and it's hard work, effort, determination, grit and willingness to do extra. If we maintain that then more people will come back on board with us as we all know fans want to support their team throughout the 90 minutes."


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