harriers-online preview
14th december 2001 


  • Exeter City (away ko 3:00pm)

    After the Harriers prolonged three week break it's back to the action at Exeter tomorrow.

    Unless there's a flu bug doing the rounds in Devon.

    The last real game we played was yonks ago now when we hammered Rust & Dust 3-0 to take us to the edge of the play-offs.
    Jan must be hoping that the break hasn't spoiled the lads and that they are raring to get back into their stride and keep us there.

    Exeter are also going through a good run at the moment with a rise to 14th position after a terrible start saw them hovering around bottom place until John Cornforth took over from Noel Blake as manager.

    They were held to a 0-0 home draw by Conference side Dagenham and Redbridge in the FA Cup on Saturday but are unbeaten in five games without conceding a goal in that time and have also recorded fine away wins at Torquay and Shrewsbury.

    City will have their Captain , Chris Curran, back from suspension for the game but will be without midfielder Paul Buckle who was whisked away in a helicopter yesterday after breaking his leg in training.

    They only have one other injury problem, Sean McCarthy, who has a sore hamstring.

    Ex-Arsenal star Paul Read will return to the squad after being out for six weeks with a back strain but will not be including want away striker Christian Roberts who sits out the match through suspension.
    Roberts has been attracting the attention of Stoke City and Crystal Palace in the past week and is expected to leave for a six figure fee once their FA Cup run is over.

    Exeter (from):
    Van Heusden, Fraser, McConnell, Curran, Watson, Campbell, Power, Ampadu, Barlow, Roscoe, Breslan, Tomlinson, Flack, Whitworth, Burrows, Richardson, McCarthy, Read, Mudge, Moor, Afful, Cronin, Zabek.

    We should also be at full strength, with the exception of Adie Smith (groin) and Tony Bird (suspension), after the long break with the only injuries being strained shoulders from carrying home the Christmas shopping.

    Jan is now building up the squad into one where everyone will have to fight for their place.

    None more so than up front where you can perm any three from Broughton, Henriksen, Larkin, Foster, Bennett and Richie Appleby who this week agreed to stay until the end of the season.

    One striker out is Stewart Hadley who has gone on loan to Worcester City.

    Mark Shail has also been the subject of loan talk in the past few weeks. He has already turned down an offer from Nuneaton and will probably turn one down from Chester City too.

    Jan is expecting a tough outing on Saturday now that John Cornforth is in charge:
    "John has got them playing more football and they have changed to a 4-4-2 system from 3-5-2.

    They are not a big, strong physical side like they were in the past, but they work very hard and they are well-organised.

    The last time we played them the conditions played a big part with the rain lashing down for 90 minutes and that can always make tackles look worse than they are.

    This time it will be competitive, as you would expect from two teams built on commitment, but there won't be anything over the top.

    They are not scoring many like ourselves but John has tightened things up at the back with five clean sheets and they don't lose many games."

    Harriers (from):
    Brock, Murphy, Joy, Stamps, Clarkson, Sall, Shail, Hinton, Smith, Blake, Williams, Davies, Bennett, Shilton, Appleby, Doyle, Larkin, Ducros, Broughton, Henriksen, Foster.


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