SOL: THIS IS NO ‘MICKEY MOUSE’ LEAGUE Macc boss blasts crit­ics of foot­ball stan­dard

Macclesfield Express - - SPORT - SHELDAN KEAY

SOL Camp­bell has hit back at those that have crit­i­cised the stan­dard of foot­ball he is now man­ag­ing, in­sist­ing that League Two is not ‘Mickey Mouse’ and that the di­vi­sion is full of tal­ented play­ers.

Camp­bell is cur­rently in his first job as a man­ager after he was ap­pointed as Mac­cles­field Town boss at the end of last month.

His step into man­age­ment comes seven years after re­tir­ing as a player, with the for­mer de­fender tak­ing over the team that is cur­rently bot­tom of the Foot­ball League.

Some of his for­mer Eng­land team-mates have also got their first jobs as man­agers this sea­son, with Frank Lam­pard tak- ing over at Cham­pi­onship side Derby County, while Steven Ger­rard is work­ing in the SPL after he was ap­pointed Rangers boss.

It has led to some on­look­ers mak­ing com­par­isons be­tween those two and Camp­bell, but the Mac­cles­field boss doesn’t see any is­sues with man­ag­ing in League Two.

“It’s all about a learn­ing process and de­vel­op­ing and make sure that this job is right. There are some good play­ers here, and if you look up and down the league there are teams that play good foot­ball. We want to be one of those clubs,” he said.

“It’s my first job and I want to get on with it. I want the team to play how I want to play. It’s foot­ball and we need to win games. It’s not Mickey Mouse foot­ball in League Two, it’s real foot­ball with good fans.” Camp­bell’s side ran out 2-0 win­ners at home to Craw­ley Town on Satur­day, and he hopes that vic­tory can now give them a boost as they look to avoid rel­e­ga­tion.

“There were a few hairy mo­ments but for me that will give the lads great con­fi­dence be­cause they’ve got through the game against the wind and against a team that was push­ing on, so we can build on that.

“We’re not there yet, we have to keep work­ing and work­ing and we can’t lose sight. We’re at the bot­tom and we have got to get off the bot­tom. We need mo­men­tum and hope­fully that game will get us on the right path.”

Mac­cles­field have an­other home game on Satur­day as they host Port Vale, and Camp­bell is well aware of how im­por­tant the games in front of their own sup­port­ers will be.

“It’s about mak­ing the Moss Rose into a fortress. We’ve got to make our home a fortress and be on the front foot and im­pose our­selves,” he said.

“We need to make sure we’re dom­i­nant in pos­ses­sion, and for us to stay up and move up the league we have to win our home games and then nick some wins and draws on the road.”

Mean­while, the boss says it is ‘ab­so­lutely bonkers’ that some of his play­ers com­ing back from in­jury haven’t been on a fit­ness pro­gramme dur­ing their re­cov­ery.

After a poor start to the cam­paign – which has left the Silk­men bot­tom of the League Two ta­ble – their form has im­proved in re­cent weeks, and they have now won three out of their past four league games.

Their up­turn in form has been helped by some key play­ers re­turn­ing from in­jury, but Camp­bell says more needs to be done to help those that are on the side­lines. “We have play­ers come back from in­jury and it’s pleas­ing to see.

“A lot of the guys had their pre-sea­son ne­glected, so that’s dif­fi­cult if you don’t have that,” he said. “We’re try­ing to im­ple­ment that fit­ness work in-be­tween the games, so a lot of the guys who are com­ing back from in­jury haven’t had a fit­ness pro­grammes, which is ab­so­lutely bonkers.

“You need that fit­ness pro­gramme within the sea­son to get stronger, fit­ter, faster and to make sure you’re at your full ca­pac­ity.

“I’ve had to be do­ing that, sort­ing the as­sis­tant, and get­ting them to play how I want to play, so it is what it is, we just have to get on with it.”

‘There are some good play­ers here. It’s real foot­ball with good fans. I want the team to play how I want’

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