CURLE WON’T TOL­ER­ATE THE ‘UN­LUCKY’ TAG

The Football League Paper - - NEWS - By John Lyons

HE MAY have missed out on a Tyson, but Carlisle United man­ager Keith Curle is con­fi­dent his side can find the knock-out blows to chal­lenge for League Two pro­mo­tion.

The Cum­bri­ans in­vited for­mer Not­ting­ham For­est striker Nathan Tyson, who was re­leased by Don­caster Rovers in the sum­mer, to try out with them – and the 34-year-old scored in a friendly against Queen of the South last Mon­day.

How­ever, the ex-Derby and Wy­combe for­ward is now look­ing to tie up a deal with a Scot­tish club.

“When you in­vite a player with Nathan’s past for a trial, you know there could be in­ter­est in him,” said Curle. “Play­ers need to look af­ter them­selves and he took an of­fer to have fur­ther talks with a team in Scotland.”

What Tyson could have pro­vided for the Blues had he stuck around was goals. Though Carlisle were the last re­main­ing un­beaten side in League Two go­ing into the week­end, they were only ninth in the ta­ble.

That’s be­cause they had won two and drawn four of their open­ing half a dozen games.

Yet, with a new-look squad this term, it’s a de­cent base to build on – and a far cry from when Curle took the reins, with the club bot­tom of the Foot­ball League two years ago.

The 52-year-old for­mer Manch­ester City and Wolves de­fender said: “There wasn’t a win­ning men­tal­ity or even a not-get-beat men­tal­ity when I ar­rived. There was a word that got used a lot – un­lucky.

“I wanted to get rid of that tag and I said to my staff not to use the word ‘un­lucky’ with the play­ers. There’s noth­ing wrong with say­ing ‘you can do bet­ter’ or ‘you can im­prove’, but I won’t ac­cept ‘un­lucky’.

“We have re-set the stan­dard. Not be­ing beaten so far this sea­son is some­thing to be proud of, but can we turn those draws into wins? I’m con­fi­dent we can be­cause we’re mak­ing enough op­por­tu­ni­ties to know that win­ning games will come.”

Af­ter see­ing his side held to a draw at home by Ac­cring­ton Stan­ley last week­end, Curle hit out at the vis­i­tors’ time-wast­ing tac­tics.

He said the Stan­ley play­ers were go­ing down in­jured even if their “sock got twisted”.

Yet Curle be­lieves that is some­thing his troops must ex­pect to face at home this sea­son.

“Teams are show­ing us a lot of re­spect,” he said. “They know we have got good play­ers and foot­ballers who can play at a higher level. Teams that play an ex­pan­sive game know they are in for a tough af­ter­noon.

“Op­po­si­tion teams are com­ing with a mind­set of de­fend­ing, rather than at­tack­ing, and it’s down to us to break them down. If we take our chances, we can put the op­po­si­tion on the back foot.

“But we’ve come a long way be­cause, in the past, away teams were com­ing to get points, play on a good sur­face and en­joy them­selves. Now they know they are go­ing to have to earn every­thing at Brun­ton Park.”

One man who could play a key role for the Cum­bri­ans is winger Nicky Adams. The 29year-old won the League Two ti­tle with Northamp­ton Town last term but was keen to move back north.

Flex­i­bil­ity

Adams, who scored the equaliser against Ac­cring­ton, also won pro­mo­tion from the bot­tom tier with Bury in 201415, so he’s seek­ing a hat-trick of pro­mo­tions in a row.

“I can’t be­lieve we signed him,” said Curle, who has man- aged at Mans­field, Ch­ester, Torquay and Notts County. “If you don’t keep an eye on him he will score or cre­ate goals. Nicky can play on the left, on the right or up front. We have flex­i­bil­ity in our squad and that can af­fect the op­po­si­tion.

“Teams have to put two play­ers on him and that cre­ates space for oth­ers.

“We did a lot of our shop­ping early and it’s pay­ing div­i­dends.”

PIC­TURE: Ac­tion Images

STAN­DARDS: Keith Curle GOALS, PLEASE! Keith Curle was in­ter­ested in tri­al­ist Nathan Tyson, pic­tured scor­ing for Don­caster, but feels he has a gem in Nicky Adams, be­low STRIKE: Ja­cob Mur­phy

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