Cum­bri­ans will be up for derby, says Curle

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Leigh Curtis

UN­DER-pres­sure Keith Curle in­sists his stut­ter­ing Carlisle United team should need no mo­ti­va­tion for their derby against Hartlepool as their top-seven hopes suf­fered an­other set­back.

The Cum­bri­ans were beaten 2-1 by Notts County hav­ing blown a goal lead given to them by a fine strike from Jabo Ibehre.

But late goals from Jon Stead and Matt Too­tle com­pleted the vis­i­tors’ turn­around as they made it four wins on the spin.

It has left Carlisle fight­ing tooth and nail for a place in the top seven, and they now face a derby with Hartlepool on Good Fri­day which is mas­sive game for both sides at the busi­ness end of this sea­son.

But re­flect­ing on the de­feat against Notts, Curle be­lieves he shouldn’t have to pick his play­ers up too much given the derby which lays on the hori­zon.

“There was some poor de­ci­sion-mak­ing at cru­cial times,” he said. “I wanted to put five mid­field­ers in to get a foothold in the game.

“There is a lot at stake at the mo­ment but I thought there was a bit of ner­vous­ness out there as well.

“We just needed to make good de­ci­sions af­ter go­ing a goal up to see the game out but we just couldn’t do it. That was dis­ap­point­ing.

“We’ll now get them ready for Hartlepool next week which is go­ing to be a huge lo­cal derby.

“But they should need no mo­ti­va­tion for that game. We know what the stakes are as they are fight­ing for their lives.”

Ju­bi­lant Notts boss Kevin Nolan said he couldn’t have been prouder of his play­ers and their trans­for­ma­tion since he ar­rived in Jan­uary has been re­mark­able.

Foot­ball League safety is all but guar­an­teed thanks to a run of just four de­feats in 16 matches, and it has led the club’s owner Alan Hardy to be­gin con­tract talks with Nolan over a new deal.

“The away form is look­ing a lot bet­ter now and a lot health­ier since I came in,” said Nolan.

“I thought we thor­oughly de­served the points and I thought we han­dled them re­ally well.

“I was a bit dis­ap­pointed with the goal we con­ceded. I thought we could have cut it out a lot ear­lier.

“I was de­lighted with the re­ac­tion of all the boys and then from the lads who came on.

“Their at­ti­tude and ap­pli­ca­tion when they came on to the pitch was just bril­liant.

“That’s why you have a squad and that’s why I talk about it all the time.”

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