Grimsby Town manager Russell Slade says Wycombe Wanderers will present a tough test to the Mariners at Blundell Park on Saturday (3pm).
Town welcome the Chairboys to Blundell Park for their second home game of the Sky Bet League Two 2017/18 campaign, and Slade says Gareth Ainsworth’s side will be strong and physical.
Speaking on iFollow Mariners, he said: “Physical, powerful battle. A very direct team, but they know what they’re doing without a shadow of a doubt, so it’ll be a tough battle – one where you’ve got to roll your sleeves up and not one for the faint-hearted.
“That’s the focus, and it’s our next opportunity. We need to embrace this challenge, and go out there and get us off the ground at home and get three points, and that would look a lot better going forward.
Scott Vernon is 50/50 to be fit for the clash with the Chairboys on the weekend, while Akwasi Asante is unavailable and may have to go back to St George’s Park for more treatment, and Chris Clements is still making progress to be 100 per cent match fit.
The Town gaffer praised Max Wright’s physical attributes, following the winger signing a new one-year deal with the Mariners earlier today, and said his loan spell at Scarborough Athletic will help him continue his development.
“Max came back and showed a really good appetite and attitude to us in the pre-season, he’s really fit and strong.
“He’s not played too many games recently but he did get his share of minutes in the pre-season, so the key with Max was we wanted a loan situation again for him to go out and play competitive football.
“With that youth loan, we will always have him as well for our under-23s, and we’ll be able to monitor him as well because he’ll be in training with us.
“We feel that that’s the best outcome for him at this stage, and then that way he’ll make progress,” he said.
The Town boss is also happy with the progress of Harry Clifton, who was on the bench v Derby County on Tuesday following his recent return to match fitness.
“Harry [Clifton] is starting to make progress now. Again, a really good attitude. He’s showing real intent to get back and he’s played some minutes in the Scunthorpe game.
“I’ve been so pleased with him in training that I put him on the bench on Tuesday.”
And with transfer deadline day just a week away, the gaffer added that he’s hoping to have a look at some more potential signings over the coming seven days.
“We’re looking at things. We would hope that we may even get the opportunity to look at a couple more players next week at the training ground.
“It’s always good when you can get a look [at trialists], and that kind of process has been good for us this summer.
“We’ve had players in and, in the end, we’ve taken them so we may get the chance to look at a couple next week.”
Tickets are still available for the Wycombe Wanderers game on Saturday.