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The Cobblers boss looks ahead to Tuesday's Checkatrade Trophy tie

8 January 2019

Cobblers boss Keith Curle previews Tuesday night’s Checkatrade Trophy area quarter-final tie against Bristol Rovers.

“Home and away we want our performance levels to continue to improve,” he said.

“We want to progress as far as we can in this competition and our preparation will be exactly the same as it would be for a competitive league game. The players are becoming familiar with the way we work and they are taking things on board very well.

“Bristol Rovers have had an upturn in form in the last few weeks and the new manager will be looking for another positive performance as will we.

“We are always looking at how we can strengthen the squad but I think it’s important in this window to have one eye on good housekeeping.

“I’ve inherited a squad that is quite sizeable in terms of numbers and a very healthy budget that is used up by the players here. Trying to add to that budget isn’t easy and it may be easier to add to that with players going in a different direction.

“We’ve got a competitive squad for where we are but as I’ve always said if the right player is available then we will look at it."

Curle has meanwhile provided a fitness update on midfielder John-Joe O’Toole.

“John-Joe is still on his return to training programme so he is back out on the grass but he’s not pain free yet.

“His pain threshold will be different to a lot of players and he is not one that has to be one hundred per cent fit to pull a shirt on but we owe it to John-Joe to make sure that he is physically ready to withstand the pressures of 90 minutes.”

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