Morecambe look to continue upturn in form at Barnet

Morecambe head to Barnet hoping to extend a recent run which has seen them climb the League Two table.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 15th December 2017, 5:36 am
On-loan Fleetwood midfielder Elliot Osborne impressed for the Shrimps against Coventry on Saturday.
On-loan Fleetwood midfielder Elliot Osborne impressed for the Shrimps against Coventry on Saturday.

Last Saturday’s 2-0 defeat of Coventry City at the Globe Arena made it two wins and two draws from the Shrimps’ last five league outings.

Those eight points have lifted them up the table to 18th, albeit only two points clear of the relegation zone.

They travel to face a Barnet side who are bottom of the table after losing against Chesterfield last time out.

Since back-to-back wins against Swindon Town and Cambridge United, they have only won once in 15 league matches; a 2-1 win at Newport County three-and-a-half weeks ago.

If that run makes it look like the Shrimps are favourites, Bentley is exercising caution given that Coventry were fancied to claim three points last weekend.

“We know Barnet have been struggling of late but Coventry are one of the top sides in the league and we beat them,” he said.

“A lot of people would have probably looked at our game against them and thought they would get the result.

“We have to respect Barnet; we know what they are about but, hopefully, we can go down there and back up what we did against Coventry.”

The Shrimps travel south buoyed by their win last weekend and in the hope of having at least three players available for selection.

Sam Lavelle can return after missing the last two games through suspension, while Kevin Ellison and Alex Kenyon are expected to have recovered from injury.

Kenyon’s pre-match back spasm had necessitated a late change of line-up and formation for Bentley.

However, given the dominant nature of their win, it would be understandable if he went with an unchanged starting XI.

Michael Rose came back in to lead the team and provided a calm head as well as creativity alongside Andy Fleming in front of the back four.

Fleetwood Town loanee Elliot Osborne was also handed a rare start, playing behind lone striker Vadaine Oliver rather than as part of a midfield three as originally intended.

For good measure, another loanee, Wigan Athletic youngster Callum Lang, staked his claim by scoring Morecambe’s second goal within moments of coming off the bench.

“Those players coming back have given me a real headache,” Bentley said.

“However, it’s one that I’ll enjoy having because those players who came in last weekend grasped their opportunity.”