Gary looks ahead to Shrewsbury challenge and discusses news on Jaaskelainen and Jacobs.
- “We’ve got to carry on in the same manner.” – Gary on facing in-from Shrewsbury.
- Great news on Jaaskelainen contract and Jacobs return.
- Caldwell delighted with sold out following heading to Greenhous Meadow.
GARY ON… SHREWSBURY AND TEAM NEWS
“We’ve come up against three teams in very good form in the last three matches, but that’s been a good thing for us because we’ve rose to those challenges and the players have welcomed the big challenges like we’ve had against Bradford, Swindon and Rochdale.
“Shrewsbury are another team on a great run, unbeaten in nine, and who will pose us lots of problems, they’re confident going into the game, but we’ve just got to go about things in the same manner that we have in recent weeks.
“We’ve not had any problems, everyone is fully fit from our last match. From a selection point of view we’ve obviously added in terms of Michael (Jacobs) coming back, so it’s good that we can do that.
“The injured players of recent weeks like Conor (McAleny) and Jason (Pearce) reacted well to playing on Monday, and it’s great to have quality players like them coming back into the squad for the end of the season.
“We’ve had a few months with a bit of an injury crisis because we had six or seven first team players who were out injured.
“Other squads might have struggled with that but we didn’t, we kept producing results and that’s testament to the rest of the squad and the players who took their chances.”
GARY ON… LATICS’ SOLD OUT FOLLOWING
“You’re always a little bit unsure at first about how supporters will react to a new manager, new chairman and different players, and we had to give them something to look forward to watching and be proud off.
“They have backed us home and away really well and have given us the support we needed to get through that difficult period at the start of the season.
“They stuck by us then, and hopefully now they’re getting the rewards of that and coming to watch a team that they believe in and believe will win games to give them success.”
GARY ON… MICHAEL JACOBS AND THE MIDWEEK 8-1 WIN
“Michael did really well on Tuesday and he’s felt no problems in training for the rest of the week, so it’s great to have someone of his quality back available for selection.
“The Development Squad game was against a young Burton side, but to score eight goals in 45 minutes against any team is a tough ask.
“The first team players (Lee Nicholls, Leon Barnett, Tim Chow, Andy Kellett, Haris Vuckic and Craig Davies) who played and needed the match minutes showed desire and hunger to go and do the right things, which helped the team to win very convincingly, against a relatively young team, but still I was delighted with everybody and their application.
“The score line is very pleasing, if you put 11 manikins out on the pitch it would be hard to score eight goals, so they still had to go out and apply themselves and they still had to control the situation to score the goals that they did, so it’s good for them in terms of their fitness, and also for their confidence.”
GARY ON… JUSSI JAASKELAINEN’S NEW CONTRACT
“It’s great news for us because he’s been fantastic since he arrived at the club, not just his performances, but his professionalism as well.
“His application around the club daily is something which can rub off on the younger players, and since he’s been in the team his performances have been there for all to see, so we’re delighted to have him for another year.
“His record has been incredible recently, and even though he had to wait a little bit for his chance, he carried on working as hard as ever on the training pitch, to me that professionalism is what makes him the goalkeeper that he is.
“He’s into his 40s now, but he’s shown that if you work hard and maintain a level of fitness then you can compete, and I hope we can keep him for a number of years ahead, because I think he’s still got that in him.”