Mark Bonner sets Cambridge United the task of matching Harrogate Town’s energy in Sky Bet League Two
Mark Bonner wants to see Cambridge United match the energetic style of Harrogate Town in Sky Bet League Two at the Abbey Stadium tomorrow (January 9).
The U’s went up to fifth in the table with a 2-1 win over Grimsby Town last weekend, while Harrogate are currently in 17th in their first season in the division after promotion from the National League.
But their lowly position masks their away form.
They have won six of 11 matches on the road, and drawn one, which gives them the third best record in the division.
“They will certainly come here confident because of the results they’ve had,” said U’s head coach Bonner.
“They will certainly come here fresh because they haven’t played a full game for two weeks.
“We’ve got to make sure that we match their energy, aggression and enthusiasm. They work their socks off, and it has served them well over a number of years.
“I think they’ve got a good side. They’ve added to it with some strength and depth this week.
“We need to make sure we’re really physically committed to the game, no excuses.
“We’ve got to go out and fight and work and hit that level, because if we do we will be in the game. If we don’t, we will be run over - it’s as simple as that.
“It’s time for us to step up and be aggressive, and really back that up. We’ve had a week without a game, a couple of extra days off, some good work on the training ground.
“We wanted to freshen people up for this next run of games. The pitches have been really tough to play on lately, and that takes its toll.
“We’ve got to make sure that we are as fresh as we can be physically but above everything, mentality wins now. It’s a real test of character now.”
The good news for the U’s is that they are likely to have a clean bill of health.
Everyone has been in training this week, although a couple were given a little while longer to recover.
“We’ve got a few little knocks and niggles that we need to overcome and hope they settle down,” said Bonner.
“But you get to this time of the year now, and it’s very rare you will go on the pitch feeling your best.
“You need a few warriors now to go and scrap and fight and give their best through this period.”