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Thursday, 24 July 2014

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Greg Abbott hoping he has finally won over Carlisle Utd fans

Old romantic Greg Abbott today hailed his love affair with Carlisle United’s supporters and swooned: I’ve pulled!

Greg Abbott photo
Greg Abbott

The manager compared his improving relationship with Carlisle’s fans to a string of romantic dates after watching his Blue stunners beat Sheffield United.

Echoing Blackpool manager Ian Holloway’s famous 2003 quote, Abbott reacted to his team’s superb 3-2 victory by saying: “It’s like trying to pull a woman with the fans.

“It takes longer with some than with others. Some you jump straight into bed with.

“With this group of fans, I feel like I’ve had to go on 22 dates. Maybe I’ve finally cracked it and we can sleep together.”

Holloway’s legendary line nine years ago saw the then QPR boss compare a battling victory over Chesterfield to taking “not the best-looking lady” home after a night out.

Abbott, meanwhile, responded to Carlisle’s brilliant display by giving his players two days off to recover from the hectic festive period.

The Blues have taken five points and remained unbeaten from a tough trio of games.

Abbott said: “I am going to go out with my girlfriend and some friends and enjoy a beer. I’ve got no embarrassment about saying that.

“I’ve told the players to do the same. They have looked after themselves over Christmas – we have treated them like men and they have behaved and played like men.

“They have played three very good clubs and got three decent results. Now I have told them to enjoy some time with their families and come back fighting fit on Thursday.”

Abbott said the reaction of the season’s best crowd had “made his day” after 7,721 fans watched his team upset the promotion-chasing Blades.

Francois Zoko’s double and JP McGovern’s winner saw Carlisle launch their 2012 play-off bid in style and end the visitors’ six-match winning streak in League One.

The Cumbrians are now seventh and outside the top six only on goal difference – and still have two extra games to play at fortress Brunton Park, where they have not lost since September 10.

United are also one of the division’s form teams having lost just twice in their last 15 games.

And Abbott said he believed supporters were enjoying the entertaining brand of football on show.

“With the type of players we have got, we want to play attacking football,” he said. “We could play with two banks of four, one up front and try to win 1-0.

“That way we might get labelled as drab and boring. In the past we have been accused of being negative and dull, but I think that myth has been put to bed.

“We know we need to stop leaking goals, but generally in football if you score more than the opposition, you are ok.”

Blades boss Danny Wilson bemoaned his team’s luck after his team hit the post three times, and also claimed Zoko’s two goals should not have stood.

Wilson said the Ivorian should have been penalised for a high challenge and offside respectively, while adding that Matty Robson should have been sent off for a “horrendous” foul on two-goal Ched Evans.

“Lady Luck wasn’t on our side,” said Wilson.

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