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Wednesday, 26 November 2014

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Abbott: Carlisle United team spirit is sky high

Greg Abbott has described Carlisle United’s team spirit as the best he has known in football for more than 25 years as the Blues put their play-off credentials on the line today.

Greg Abbott photo
Greg Abbott

United’s promotion-chasing team face a six-pointer at Notts County (Meadow Lane, 3pm) as the race for League One’s sixth place hots up.

And manager Abbott insists the mood inside Brunton Park is better than anything he has known since his playing days.

The Blues’ boss even compared his current squad to his Bradford City team that won the Division Three title in the tragedy-struck season of 1984/85.

“In terms of what we have within the club this is the best dressing room I have seen since the one I was in which won promotion with Bradford,” Abbott said.

“We all hurt together and we all smile together, and it’s an excellent place to be.”

Abbott is desperate to lead Carlisle to the first promotion of his managerial and coaching career to enable him to add a winner’s medal to the 1985 title, which he collected before the Valley Parade fire which killed 56 people.

That is the only other league honour in Abbott’s cabinet, with last season’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy triumph his other major achievement.

But the Blues manager must today outsmart a rival who has already done something that Abbott has never achieved in his three years in charge at Brunton Park.

Notts County’s Keith Curle has won his first three league games in charge – a sequence which has remained elusive to Abbott.

The United chief will settle for two in a row today as he considers a call-up at left-back for Chris Chantler to replace former loanee Ben Parker, with the Blues aiming to build up last weekend's 3-2 home win against Yeovil.

The Blues have yet to win on their travels in 2012 but can return to sixth if they beat the Magpies and Stevenage fail to win at Exeter.

Paddy Madden, Danny Livesey and Tom Taiwo are set to remain in the side after their impressive showings against Yeovil.

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