Wildig: Underdog status suits Shrimps fine

Aaron Wildig believes all the attention is on Carlisle United
Aaron Wildig believes all the attention is on Carlisle United
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Morecambe midfielder Aaron Wildig believes all the pressure is on Carlisle United when the Shrimps travel to Brunton Park tomorrow.

Jim Bentley’s players make the trip on the back of seven points from 12, the last three coming via last Saturday’s 4-1 win against Notts County.

In contrast, Carlisle go into the game on the back of consecutive defeats against Grimsby Town and Colchester United.

Having started the season with a 15-game unbeaten run in the league, Keith Curle’s men are presently third in League Two, six points adrift of leaders Doncaster Rovers.

They were 3-0 winners, however, when the two sides met at the Globe Arena in October as Jason Kennedy’s second-half double backed up Danny Grainger’s opener.

“We’re going to go there as underdogs with nothing to lose,” said Wildig, who missed that game through injury.

“We won there last year but I think they have spent a bit of money and their target is to win the league.

“We want to go there and give a good account of ourselves; on our day there’s no reason why we can’t win.”

Despite becoming one of Bentley’s key attacking players since returning to the starting line-up in November, Wildig is yet to break his duck this season.

It has not been for the want of trying, however, with a combination of the woodwork and excellent goalkeeping frustrating the 24-year-old.

He said: “I’ve got to stop letting it play on my mind but I haven’t played enough football through injuries.

“I need to stay on the pitch and, hopefully, once the first goal comes, the rest will follow soon afterwards.”

Two players who did find the net, however, against Notts County were the Shrimps’ veteran pair of Kevin Ellison and Michael Rose.

Having played a part in Paul Mullin’s first-half goal, Ellison capped a man-of-the-match performance in stoppage time with Morecambe’s fourth goal.

Rose had netted their third in the first half, converting emphatically from the penalty spot after Mullin had been brought down by Richard Duffy.

“Michael Rose is a penalty taker who doesn’t think you should miss and doesn’t miss in training,” Bentley said.

“He has great composure and showed that against Notts County, while I was really pleased for Kevin Ellison as well.

“Kev’s taken a little bit of criticism but look how fit he was on Saturday; he was man of the match for his work-rate alone.

“He just doesn’t stop – he was the fittest player on the pitch but, as a group, I thought they were brilliant.”

Despite winning last time out, Bentley will have to make at least one change with Andy Fleming suspended for three games following his first-half red card last weekend, keeping him out until the home match with Cambridge United on February 11.

However, it is hoped that Aaron McGowan and Rhys Turner will be able to travel after missing last weekend.