Bentley eyes return to winning formula

Morecambe were beaten at home by Stevenage in October

Morecambe were beaten at home by Stevenage in October

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Morecambe boss Jim Bentley is targeting a good Easter after watching his side end their seven-game losing run.

Last Saturday’s draw against Hartlepool United was only the Shrimps’ second point from the last 27 available to them.

They go into today’s game at play-off hopefuls Stevenage, looking to make it back-to-back defeats for Boro, who lost 4-0 to Colchester United last time out.

Bentley used that result, as well as examples of his own team’s fortunes this season, to point out League Two’s up-and-down nature.

“We’re desperate to win the games over Easter but there are no easy games in the division,” he said.

“Anyone is capable of beating everyone else, when you think that we can take four points from Portsmouth and lose six against Cheltenham Town. It’s important we have a good week now and pick up some points over Easter.”

Saturday’s draw means Morecambe are eight points ahead of second-bottom Newport County AFC going into the final five games of their League Two campaign. Paul Mullin’s second-half goal arrested the Shrimps’ recent slump, leaving the manager happy that honours ended even.

“I was just pleased we broke the cycle because it was important we didn’t lose the game,” Bentley said.

“If you’d have asked me at half-time, then I’d have snapped your hand off for a draw but we got a response in the second half.

“We could have been in a much worse position at half-time because we were poor. It’s not often I lose my head in the dressing room but it was one of those days.”

Bentley had made five changes to his side at the weekend after claiming his players were ‘bullied’ in losing at Cheltenham Town.

Barry Roche (wrist) and Alex Kenyon (suspended) were known about in advance as Lee Molyneux, Aaron Wildig and Dean Winnard were on the bench.

“Cheltenham had a physical presence but Hartlepool were a different side and there were different things we had to work on,” Bentley said.

“They are more about technical ability and pace whereas Cheltenham 
were more direct and we struggled a little bit against that.”