Morecambe boss boosted by midfielder's return to action

Stephen Robinson hopes Aaron Wildig’s goal last weekend can kickstart a season beset by injuries and illness to the midfielder.

Tuesday, 9th November 2021, 8:00 am

Morecambe’s longest-serving player came off the bench for only his fifth appearance of the campaign against Newport County AFC on Saturday.

The 29-year-old made an instant impression, scoring with his first touch to give the Shrimps a 1-0 win in their FA Cup first round tie at the Mazuma Stadium.

Robinson, however, was keen to play down any talk of an inspired change on his part.

Aaron Wildig scored for Morecambe at the weekend

He said: “Credit goes to Aaron, not to me.

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“I was tempted to start Aaron. What he does give us is another bit of experience, he scores goals at this level.

“He scored a lot of goals last year but he’s been so unfortunate with injuries.

“Every time he gets near the first team, he gets an injury, he gets an illness, so hopefully his luck’s turned.

“I think he’s a really clever footballer that can play a big part for us going forward.”

Now in his seventh full season with the Shrimps, Wildig has always been a box-to-box midfielder capable of chipping in with goals.

That potential was finally realised last season with a career-high 10 goals from 46 outings as Morecambe gained promotion.

While pleased to have the option of a goalscoring midfielder at his disposal, Robinson was also keen to highlight some of Wildig’s other attributes.

He said: “That’s (goalscoring) invaluable at this level but, also, his communication; we’re a quiet side.

“To have someone that speaks in midfield, that controls and actually understands the game; he understands, tactically, the game and it’s really good when you give him a message and he takes it on board.

“I’m delighted personally for him. He’s had a tough time and he’s worked hard to get himself fit again and, hopefully, we’ll get 90 minutes out of him on Tuesday.”

Morecambe play again this evening when Carlisle United visit for the final Papa John’s Trophy group stage game (7pm).

They are unable to qualify for the knockout stages after defeat to Everton’s youngsters and a penalty shootout loss at Hartlepool United.

With the international break meaning no match until November 20 after tonight, the plan is to give game time to some in need of it but without fielding a weakened team.

Robinson said: “We’ll go as strong as we can, I’ve chopped and changed the back four because injuries have killed us.

“I’m trying to get some consistency in the group that’s available to me and we’ll be looking to build on that on Tuesday. It’s an opportunity for some but we won’t be making wholesale changes.”

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