SARLL: WE ARE A TAR­GET NOW

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Matthew Good­ing CAM­BRIDGE (4-4-2): Nor­ris 5, Hal­l­i­day 7, Legge 6, Whar­ton 7, Car­roll 6, Min­goia 5 (Dunk 69, 5), Lewis 5 (McGurk 61, 5), Taylor 6, Maris 7, Berry 7, Wil­liamson 4 (Corr 61, 6) Subs not used: Gre­gory, Roberts, McDon­agh, O’Neil STEVE­NAGE (4

DARREN SARLL be­lieves his in-form Steve­nage have be­come marked men af­ter they were held to a goal­less draw by Cam­bridge.

A drab match pro­duced few chances, and the re­sult leaves Boro, who came into the match on the back of one de­feat in 11 games, six points be­hind third­placed Portsmouth as they bid to mount a late charge for au­to­matic pro­mo­tion.

“Our level of per­for­mance was re­duced, so I’m happy to take a point,” said Steve­nage man­ager Sarll.

“I don’t think our goalie had to make a save, and we saw two teams try and neu­tralise each other.

“Black­pool played against us with a sim­i­lar strat­egy to what Shaun’s [Derry] team did here, and Cam­bridge stopped us play­ing well.

“That’s what we’ve got to ex­pect now; teams will look at us like we used to look at the Ply­mouths, Carlisles and Don­cast­ers, and work very hard to coun­ter­act our strengths.

“We had to grind it out, be or­gan­ised and keep a clean sheet, and I’m as de­lighted with the point as I was with the three we got last Satur­day at Portsmouth.”

Steve­nage made the early run­ning, but their mo­men­tum was checked by an in­jury to mid­fielder Tom Pett, who had to be sub­sti­tuted af­ter a strong chal­lenge from the out­stand­ing Scott Whar­ton.

As the half wore on Cam­bridge, who still harbour pro­mo­tion am­bi­tions of their own, came into the match, with Greg Taylor fail­ing to con­nect with a cross from Ge­orge Maris, and Luke Berry see­ing a shot de­flect just over the bar.

U’s boss Shaun Derry rang the changes in the sec­ond pe­riod, in­tro­duc­ing strik­ers Adam McGurk and Barry Corr, who have both spent long spells on the side­lines in­jured this sea­son.

But it was Steve­nage’s lead­ing marks­man Matt God­den who had the game’s best chance, pounc­ing on a mis­take by Leon Legge and mak­ing space for a shot which flew just wide of the post.

Berry could have won the game for Cam­bridge late on, but his header from Brad Hal­l­i­day’s cross was too high to trou­ble vis­it­ing keeper Chris Day and a stale­mate en­sued.

The draw sees Cam­bridge stay 15th in the ta­ble, and Derry said: “We’re play­ing against the di­vi­sion’s form side, who are scor­ing goals ev­ery week and beat­ing ev­ery­one they face. But I felt they never came close to beat­ing us.

“It was a point we’ll take the pos­i­tives from.

“We wanted to win the game but credit to both de­fences here, nei­ther side was able to get a break.

“There are eight games to go and we’ve only lost two of the last nine, which I’m de­lighted about.

“We’ve got our game in hand on Tues­day against Ac­cring­ton, who are another form side, but that’s our chance to close the gap on the play-offs.”

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