Morecambe's hard-to-beat mentality firmly in place for away games
WHETHER IT HAS anything to do with their modest gates or not, but Morecambe have built a reputation for being better away from home than in front of their own fans in recent seasons.
They used to regard their old Christie Park ground as something of a fortress, but they've struggled to create the same aura around the new Globe Arena.
It's been a similar story this season, so last Saturday's 1-0 home win over Southend must have been a real boost.
Under their former long-serving centre-half Jim Bentley, the Shrimps have developed a hard-to-beat mentality which consistently sees them producing upsets against so-called bigger teams.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
Bentley has made sure that his defence and midfield is packed with experienced, determined pros who won't back off in a scrap.
There's nobody more popular at the Globe than 6ft 4in tall goalie Barry Roche, 30, now in his fifth season at the club after spells with Nottingham Forest and Chesterfield.
Bentley can pick between three steady 'thirtysomething' centre-backs – Nick Fenton (Notts Co, Doncaster, Grimsby, Rotherham), Will Haining (Oldham, St Mirren) and Chris McCready (Crewe, Tranmere, Northampton).
Options at full-back include summer signing Andrew Wright (Scunthorpe), recent on-loan recruit Jordan Mustoe from Oldham, long-serving Andy Parrish and the pacy Izak Reid, signed from Macclesfield two years ago.
There's plenty of know-how in a midfield roster of Scot Gary McDonald, former Wrexham player Andy Fleming, goalscoring winger Kevin Ellison and Stuart Drummond (see Player To Watch).
Ellison, now 33, is still a danger anywhere near goal after a good career with Leicester, Stockport, Chester, Hull, Tranmere and Rotherham.
Pace and youthful enthusiasm is saved for up front, where Bentley is currently going with ex-Oldham youngster Lewis Allessandra alongside the highly promising Jack Redshaw, 21.
The nippy Redshaw, once a trainee at Manchester City, has already scored six goals this season after spells with Rochdale and Altrincham.
Former York striker Richard Brodie, on loan from Crawley, is suspended.
Forward options include former Chesterfield striker Jordan Burrow and midfielder Joe McGee.
Andreas Arestidou, signed from Preston in the summer, is the reserve goalkeeper.