John Ward - Radio Cumbria Interview

Last updated : 18 January 2008 By Thetashkentterror

John Ward
United boss John Ward spoke to BBC Radio Cumbria on Friday evening as he talked about all the latest news on the transfer front, Ward also chatting about the game coming up against Crewe at Brunton Park tomorrow :

" Grant (Smith) is 27 years of age, he's very experienced, he's had a number of football clubs. He's a young man that I first came into contact with when he was at Bristol City as a player and I was at Cheltenham Town. He then went across up to Walsall in the Midlands, went back to Bristol City and they terminated his contract. I took him in at Cheltenham for a couple of weeks in training and admired him and liked him. I tried to get him but he had an offer back up in Scotland where is he from and obviously we respected that.

" He came up here, he's since been playing in Scandinavia so he is pretty well travelled but he's come back from there because their season has closed up now with the heavy winters that they have. He contacted me asking if he could come into training and he has actually been training with us for the last five weeks or so now. So he's not like a new face in the football club, we've got the opportunity to bring him in, he strengthens the squad which is something that I said I wanted to do when I came in.

" He can play in midfield and he can play upfront so he gives me some options in terms of that. We have obviously got Paul Thirlwell injured in central midfield and while Luke Joyce is very popular in there he is pretty young. If we need a bit of experience then Grant offers us those things so it strengthens the group. It's not a question of saying that I have gone looking for that position to do but it strengthens the squad that we have got. I felt that we needed that ever since I came in and Grant does that.

" We've had a look at Evan (Horwood) six times I think now at senior level, my staff, myself and everybody has had a good look at him and we knew then that he would be available come this time. We are very, very pleased to bring him in, again we have seen him training with us now for the last two or three days and my coaching staff are very impressed with what they have seen. We think we have got a very good young player there, who has not been brought in for the future, he's there to compete now. He can play full-back and he can play one higher so he strengthens the squad also.

" The Cleveland Taylor one stands pretty much where it did the last time I spoke to you. It hasn't altered much at all, I've spoken to Nigel Adkins continually over the week. I do know that they have had meetings yesterday and I was hoping to get a call today to see if anything had been decided. We've made pretty much our final offer to Scunthorpe saying that we would like to bring the lad here. It's really up to them to make that decision, I have asked if we can have a yes or a no because if it is a no then I need to move on. Time is moving as well so it is really down to Scunthorpe to tell me. "

" It's not from our end, we've been pretty clear with what we want to do, I've been pretty open with you as well telling you what we are doing. It's really down to Scunthorpe, he's contracted to them, they have got to decide whether they wish to let him go at this particular time for the fee that we have offered. If not then they keep him and I have to move on elsewhere, but it's down to other people rather than our football club.

" We are beginning to get to a cut-off point, we've pretty much said that this week that we wanted to know. Here we are on Friday night and I've not heard anything so I'm pretty much running a little bit thin on patience towards this weekend coming up. We'll get the game over with on Saturday, we'll see if we can get anything working early on in the week but I don't want to be going much longer than Monday particularly.

" Joe Anyinsah and Richard Keogh is just the same position, they belong, or they are contracted to other football clubs and other managers and they make the decisions. We've made our intentions pretty clear on all players and I think that I've been pretty clear with you as well and our supporters. They want to know and we've said very openly with our people what we'd like to try to do. The actual decisions are down to other football clubs and other managers to see if we can bring their players into Carlisle.

" There are one or two other irons in the fire but they are obviously priorities for us. We've been pretty open with it that we have got one or two others but we might be, no disrespect to anybody, but we might looking at probably loans rather than permanents if these guys are not available to us. We'd prefer permanents because we want to move the club on.

" I can understand the fans' concerns because they don't know the information that I've got. I'm trying very hard to give the information that we've got, it's very accurate as far as I'm concerned. If I'm telling you that's what it is then that's exactly what it is. They're very much aware that we're trying to bring those guys in or one of two of those people in. If we do, if our patience pays off in the end then they will be as pleased as I am. "

" I'm asking them to bear with us, we are giving them every information we possibly can and I think the names that we have talked about are favourites with people. They would like to see a couple of those guys in the club. If in the next week or so we can get them in then that patience will pay off and I'm asking that from everybody. Meanwhile we have got this big game tomorrow and we've got to get behind the team that we are working with anyway.

" Our away form does put more pressure on the home games in terms of winning the games. It's a big game for us, as each game moves along and the longer we stay in the top six they will become more important and bigger. It doesn't particularly matter who you play or what you play as the next game becomes the next biggest one.

" We're really disappointed that we've had three defeats on the road on the trot and we need to put that right tomorrow at home. If we can then we keep the pressure on the people around us and if it builds a little bit of a gap with the guys out of the top seven then so-be-it as well. We know the importance of the game and we're trying very hard to improve that away form, we can't do that tomorrow but we can improve the home one.

" We didn't go out negative last week, we had little choice because Doncaster played very well and that sometimes happens in a game. I was pretty pleased to go in at half-time 0-0, I think saying we could have been 4-0 down was too far away to consider they could have done that. It wasn't as if Keiren Westwood had kept us in the game, we had to work hard to stay in the game, I'll accept that and our possession of the ball was pretty poor.

" It wasn't a negative view but in the second-half we picked up, football is like that, we're not going to go in and dominate people and dominate games. We're not good enough to do that, but I don't think anybody is so we'll work hard to stay with games. We're asking people to just keep their strength with us as well, we're fourth in the table coming into the middle of January, it's a good position for the club and we are trying very hard to improve it. "

" We've obviously got to go tomorrow with the players that we have got, I'm not going to name that side at the moment with yourselves. I'm sure you respect that but at the same time whoever we pick it's Carlisle United and whatever we pick it's a team to support. There will be loads of opinions and I'll never please everybody, I can't do that. I'm trying my best to get the right team to win the next game, we'll do that tomorrow. Whoever is playing wide right or midfield or full-back or whatever then we hope everybody can get behind them and support the team.

" The last home game they were brilliant, we were 2-0 down and the home support was fantastic. They stuck with the team and together, when we worked hard together in the second-half we have managed to get a win out of it. They are the sort of the days that we want, I don't want to go 2-0 down too often but we need everybody together. Regardless of names or positions or opinions it's Carlisle United, I'm the manager, you're the supporter, let's all try hard together tomorrow afternoon for a couple of hours and get a win.

" I don't know where the Simon Hackney fatigue thing came from, Simon Hackney, 23, fatigued, what are you talking about? They (the BBC) might have seen him one evening falling asleep in front of the TV but it has not come from us. He's trained all week, I was amazed when I read that and I had to laugh myself. Simon is a super little boy and he's in really good form, he did well last week at Doncaster and he'll be flying down that left-wing tomorrow I'm absolutely sure. Talking about fatigue at his age, a young boy like him, come on!

" He (Paul Thirlwell) is slowly slowly, I wouldn't say that we've learned a lesson but we got him back in. It was all right and all correct only last week when we tried to get him back and get him going, with him breaking down we don't want to rush the young fella. He's my captain, he's the club captain, he's a really influential person in the club. I know that people rate him as a player and when I get him back fit and well, and we will get him back fit and well, we've got another good player in the club. So it will not be rushed, he won't be back next week, we've got to take it through to the end of this month certainly.

" I'm fine, I just want to give everybody information, we've got it, it's not a problem for me. I keep on saying that we are all in it together and if I can furnish information to our supporters then I will do. Hopefully they'll back us in knowing that we are trying our best to do things well for them. "