Gavin Skelton says Carlisle United must be ready to respond as teams become aware of their improving reputation.

A run of four wins from five has significantly boosted the Blues’ survival prospects.

Assistant boss Skelton says other sides will showing United more respect as a result.

And he says the team must show they can rise to that challenge in a bid to build on their positive form.

“That’s the point where you have to work even harder because you come on the radar of teams,” the coach said.

“People will see we’ve had a few good results and how we play, so teams will probably give you more respect than they might have done.

“So you have to work that bit harder. But results naturally give you confidence and hopefully the players can kick on – not rest on our laurels, take confidence from it and keep pushing on.”

The 2-0 win over Bradford City on Saturday was up there with United’s best displays of the season.

Skelton, though, said he and boss Keith Millen will keep demanding more.

“I think we can improve,” he said. “In the first half it was ok, it wasn’t quite right but it was ok, which is fine.

“You want that consistency, like that last 10-15 minutes of the first half and at times in the second half – that option, being patient in possession, and also that option to spin it in behind.”

Skelton admitted the spirits in the dressing room were understandably high in light of United’s improved efforts.

“It’s a different mood from when you don’t win,” he said.
“The players are delighted, will be pleased and [will have had] a good weekend but this week we’ll be back to it.

“You never get too carried away. We’ll have to keep that confidence but we’re still where we are in the league, there are lots of teams around us and we need to keep picking up points.

“We won’t rest on our laurels, we played well and deserved to win but I think there’s more to come from us.”

United do not have a midweek game this week and Skelton said that will be a good opportunity to put in some extra work on the training ground.

The Blues are also having an in-house game tomorrow when Zach Clough and Lewis Alessandra are set to get some minutes under their belt on their return from injury.

Free agent Brandon Comley, who has been training with the squad, should also feature.

“Especially with new players, and with some coming back from injury, it gives you the chance to have a proper training week,” Skelton said.

“Sometimes when you play Saturday-Tuesday…personally I don’t mind playing because it’s good to have the games, but it does give you the chance to do a proper training week and get some more work into the ones that haven’t played, and more tactical understanding to the players that are playing on a Saturday.”