Morecambe boss: We have to stand up and be counted at Dover

Morecambe manager Jim Bentley looks on during training.
Morecambe manager Jim Bentley looks on during training.
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Jim Bentley has challenged his players to “stand up and be counted” as they bid to avoid a cup shock at Dover Athletic in the FA Cup first round on Saturday.

The Shrimps boss watched The Whites’ 2-2 draw at Southport in the Conference Premier last Saturday and has readied his side for physical battle at the The Crabble.

He said: “We know it will be a tough game.

“I watched them against Southport and we’ve done plenty of work on them.

“They’re a big, strong, physical side, fighting for their lives in the Conference Premier.

“They’ve got good players in forward positions and I thought Stefan Payne looked a good player against Southport and there’s a bit of league experience in there too.

“Every one of our lads will have to stand up and be counted. 
“There’ll be a big crowd who will get right behind their side.”

Bentley’s Shrimps go into the game in patchy form having not won in their last three League 2 games.

The Morecambe boss is looking forward to shifting focus to the FA Cup, a competition he is desperate to do well in.

Bentley said: “We’re having a bit of a tough time in the league.

“A few decisions have gone against us, we haven’t got that rub of the green that we did earlier on in the season.

“Every club has little wobbles and sticky spells and we’re going through one at the moment.

“Everyone was getting pats on the back when we were doing well but if you loose a couple you’re open to criticism.

“We’ve got to make sure we roll our sleeves up, stick together and dig in.

“We’ve had a good week. We changed things round a little coming in on a Wednesday that’s usually a day off.

“It’s a nice distraction to go and play in the FA Cup. It’s a great cup competition.

“I love being involved in it and the potential of getting to that third round when the big boys come in is what it’s all about.”

On the injury front Jack Redshaw should return to the squad after missing the Accrington game on Friday night through illness.

Andy Wright has had an injection in a groin problem and should be fine for the trip south.

Barry Roche (hip) and Jamie Devitt (hamstring) remain long-term absentees.