Team News From The Pirates Camp

Last updated : 14 January 2011 By Thetashkentterror

James Tunnicliffe
Rovers centre-half James Tunnicliffe spoke to the Bristol Evening Post ahead of his side's League One match against Carlisle at Brunton Park tomorrow, Tunnicliffe first looking back on the Gas drawing 2-2 at home to Walsall last Tuesday evening :

" The new manager (Dave Penney) is in now and I was lucky enough to play on Tuesday, although unfortunately we didn't win - it would have been nice to have got three points for him. But at least we didn't lose and that's a positive. Now we have to turn it into an unbeaten run.

" It has been difficult because for the last six months I've been in and out of the side - playing a game, not playing for weeks and then getting thrown in again. The weather hasn't helped either, but, hopefully, now I can get a run of games in to build my match fitness up. If you do that, then you are only going to get better.

" If I do stay in the side, hopefully I can put a good performance in to give the manager something to think about. I am critical of myself and I know I didn't have the best game at Sheffield Wednesday a few weeks ago, so when I was dropped for the next match I held my hands up. I haven't been at my best this season - for what reason I don't know - but I've been working as hard as I can.

" I had a chat with my family and friends over Christmas and feel a lot better mentally. Now I really want to push on under the new manager and do well for myself and the club. Things haven't gone to plan so far, but this is a new start for me and I'd like to prove to people over the remainder of the season what a good player I am and what I can do for the club.

" We met him (Penney) before the game on Tuesday after a quick training session in the morning and things went really well. He had quite an involvement with the game against Walsall but I think it will be better for the lads at Carlisle after a few proper training sessions. Then we will know how he wants us to play and what he expects from everyone - but the first impressions have been very good. He will have his own views and I'm sure he will want to add a bit of experience to the squad.

" They are all going to be tough games now and no matter who we are playing, we need to pick up points. I've experienced being at the bottom of the league when I was at Stockport, but we came through it, got near the play-offs the next season and then got promoted the one after that. "

The reason that Tunnicliffe is highly likely to feature in the Rovers starting eleven tomorrow after starting the majority of the season on the bench is because of the probable absence of centre-half Byron Anthony. The first-choice Pirates defender having also missed the Walsall game earlier in the week after suffering a bout of food poisoning.

The referee for tomorrow's match is Paul Tierney from Wigan and he will be assisted down the lines by Richard Clark from Morpeth in Northumberland and Ross Joyce from Middlesbrough. Meanwhile the fourth official is Scott Oldham from Poulton-le-Fylde, near Blackpool.