Jim Bentley’s Morecambe lost 3-0 at Portsmouth last weekend but he expects his 11th-placed side to bounce back at Stevenage tomorrow.
The Shrimps boss is expecting a scrappy game against Graham Westley’s 15th-placed battlers but urged his men to fight fire with fire if they want to avoid being leapfrogged in the League Two table.
He said: “You know what you’re getting from a Graham Westley side.
“They’ll be energetic, organised and up for the battle.
“They’ve been a little up and down. But you can’t read too much into last Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Northampton because they didn’t finish the FA Cup game until Thursday night.
“It’s a tough match and Stevenage away is one where you’ve got to roll your sleeves up and fight fire with fire and match their endeavour and work-rate.”
After the Stevenage clash, the Shrimps’ next match is against Luton on December, 13.
By then, Alan Goddall and Kevin Ellison – who are both suspended for tomorrow’s clash – will be back and Padraig Amond and Jamie Devitt, who will feature in tomorrow’s match, should be back to full fitness.
But Bentley has one less thing to worry about as on-loan keeper Scott Davies extended his stay from Fleetwood until January 3.
Bentley is keen to sign him up for the rest of the season. He said: “I think Scott’s been brilliant.
“He’s trained really hard, been good around the place, been good with the younger lads and ticks all the right boxes.
“I think he’s been our best player in the last month or so.
“I’m absolutely made up we could keep him. We’ve got to look towards January and we know that Barry Roche is out for the season.
“So we’ve got to make sure we get a replacement sorted and in an ideal world that would be Scott Davies.
“But I don’t know what Scott’s plans are, I don’t know what Fleetwood’s plans are and whether financially we could afford to keep Scott for another six months.”
But the news spells the end of Queens Park Rangers keeper Joe Lumley’s loan spell.
Bentley said: “Joe came in and did okay at Dover, played well in the reserves, trained well, fitted in with the group and was a lovely lad.
“The only problem was with him being a London lad, he was backwards and forwards.
“He’ll go back to QPR now, with us having Scott signed up. It’s pointless us having Scott and Joe with Andreas Arestidou back fit now. “
Bentley is aware that his opposite number Westley may not be popular with many in the North West after an unsuccessful stint at Preston.
But he has no axe to grind with Stevenage gaffer.
In fact, Bentley praised the Stevenage boss.
He said: “He has his own ways but there’s no doubting he’s a good manager.
“Anyone who can get a team out of the Conference and then League Two back to back has got my respect. It’s an unbelievable achievement.”