Forwards are key to Morecambe’s revival

Morecambe get set to welcome Colchester United tomorrow as they look to build upon their recent good run.

Jim Bentley’s players have won three and drawn one of their last five games, taking 10 points in the process and moving up to 17th in League Two.

Rhys Oates has four goals for Morecambe this season

Rhys Oates has four goals for Morecambe this season

It could have been even better but for late goals conceded against Cheltenham Town and Tranmere Rovers denying the Shrimps a further three points.

Key players in their recent revival have been the attacking trio of Rhys Oates, A-Jay Leitch-Smith and Liam Mandeville.

All three follow the Shrimps’ tried and tested route of bringing in players with something to prove, emulating the examples of former players including Tom Barkhuizen, Jamie Devitt and Shaun Miller

Oates made the step up from the National League after leaving Hartlepool United, Leitch-Smith has suffered from injuries in the past, while Mandeville is rebuilding his reputation after being loaned out for the season by Doncaster Rovers.

Oates and Leitch-Smith lead the Morecambe goalscoring charts with four apiece so far this season, one more than Mandeville.

“Liam is a player who can cover a couple of positions and he works hard,” Bentley said.

“Technically he’s excellent, he’s very clever and he’s a good player to have at the club.

“We’re looking at other people who have maybe lost their way and Rhys is perhaps one of those as well.

“He’s getting fitter and stronger, he’s good in the air and can get close-range goals as well.

“He’s another one who can give us added options but, ideally, we could still do with a bit more experience in the squad.”