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Carlisle Preview

Paul Wilkinson ahead of Saturday's Sky Bet League Two clash in Cumbria.

2 March 2018

Paul Burgess
Paul Wilkinson

Town will head to Carlisle United on Saturday afternoon (3pm) after the team were given the all clear to travel following a pitch inspection on Friday.

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Grimsby Town caretaker boss Paul Wilkinson says the Beast from the East has had an effect on the Mariners’ preparations for tomorrow’s Sky Bet League Two clash with Carlisle United at Brunton Park (3pm).

The referee gave the game the go-ahead this morning – despite a number of EFL fixtures being postponed due to the heavy snow – and Wilkinson confirmed that his side have had limited opportunities to train due to the adverse weather conditions.

Speaking exclusively to gtfc.co.uk, he said: “I doubt we’ll be the only club in the country that’s had a lot of issues with the weather and the snow, and the opportunities for training, so it’s been a bit of a stop-start week.

“The pitch is fine up in Carlisle so we’re just planning the best way, and the best route, to get there and it’ll give us the least issues with travel.

“We’ll have to assess everybody when we get everybody together – obviously we’ve had one or two that have had troubles getting in over the last couple of days.

“So we’ll get everybody together today and then we’ll assess everybody, and obviously we’ll pick our team tomorrow.

“But everybody’s got to put up with that, and we’re all ready and focused for Saturday.”

Wilkinson said Keith Curle’s side – who are 10th-placed in the league, following a run of three straight wins – will present a tough test for the Mariners.

He said: “They’re on a good little run – three wins in a row. I know Curley (Keith Curle) from playing against him many years ago.

“They’re well-organised, strong, and physical, and it’s going to be another good test for us.

“He’s a good lad, I’ve always got on with Curley. He’ll have his players up and ready for this one, they’re on a decent run, and it’s going to be a tough old afternoon for us again.”

Carlisle aiming for play-offs

Carlisle United still have an outside chance of making the play-offs after three wins on the bounce and a good run of form in general since the turn of the year.

Keith Curle's side picked up a 1-0 victory at Yeovil Town last weekend thanks to a second half goal from Hallam Hope, which saw them rise to 10th place and they are now six points off Swindon Town as they look for an exciting end to the season.

Former England international Curle has been in charge at Brunton Park for three and a half years now, and will be hoping that the stability that the club have had with him in  charge will pay dividends come to the end of the campaign.

The Cumbrian side have plenty of goals in their team, with no less than 6 players contributing more than five goals so far this campaign, and this attacking threat is one thing that the Mariners will have to watch out for.

Town looking for revenge

Town will be looking for revenge after going down 1-0 in the reverse fixture at Blundell Park back in November.

A goal from experienced defender Clint Hill was the difference on that day

The two sides have met on 43 times over the years.


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