Morecambe boss hopes side can peg back Exeter

Jim Bentley and Ken McKenna.

Jim Bentley and Ken McKenna.

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Morecambe boss Jim Bentley is hoping his side can haul in Exeter at the Globe Arena on Saturday.

The Shrimps are just three points behind the Grecians who themselves sit just two shy of the League 2 play-offs.

Bentley’s men are hoping to bounce back from their Johnstone’s Paint Trophy exit at Fleetwood and make it back-to-back home wins.

He said: “It’s very tight.

“It takes a couple of defeats and all of a sudden you’re looking over your shoulder but with a win or two you’re looking at the teams above you.

“It’s great for us, a home game against Exeter who are three points ahead of us.

“There’s not much between us with regards to goal difference so it’s a great opportunity to peg them back.”

The Shrimps host an Exeter side that are unbeaten in their last four league games and will host Liverpool in the third round of the FA Cup next month.

Bentley said: “They’ve picked up and drawn Liverpool in the FA Cup which will give them a massive boost.

“They’ve got good players who know the level inside-out. The manager’s (Paul Tisdale) obviously a long-serving manager and they’re doing well.

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“They’ve got one or two injuries themselves but the players who have come in have grasped the opportunity and they seem to be in decent enough form.”

Bentley’s main consideration ahead of the game will be the balance between defence and attack.

Having entertained for large parts of the season, scoring and conceding plenty of goals, The Shrimps boss went with a more direct and physical approach against Dagenham and Fleetwood.

Bentley said: “It’s just getting the balance right.

“We’ve scored goals all season but it was important we locked the back door because we’ve been leaking goals as well.

“It worked a treat against Dagenham with the conditions the way they were.

“Going to Fleetwood the other night it was a case of same again but it didn’t work.

“What we have proven is that we’re adaptable.

“It’s no good having one set up and one team that just goes out and plays the same way.
“We can go more offensive and we can go a little more rigid, strong and physical.”

This weekend will also see The Shrimps play a Saturday home game for the first time since October 24 with Bentley hoping for some home comforts.

He said: “I think it’s the first home game on a Saturday or five or six weeks and that’s very strange over the course of a season.

“It’ll be nice to get in front of our home fans on a Saturday afternoon.”

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