Steven Pressley says he has tapped into Eric Kinder’s knowledge of Exeter ahead of tomorrow's clash with the League Two leaders.

Carlisle academy boss Kinder was assistant manager to Matt Taylor with the Grecians last season.

He worked with a number of the current Exeter squad, including Carlisle-born striker Ryan Bowman.

Pressley said: “I’ve already spoken to him [Kinder] on a number of things. I asked him a couple of questions about certain things and he was very open about it, which was very helpful.”

Ex-United defender Tom Parkes will also be in the Exeter squad while Olufela Olomola is available for the Blues having sat out last weekend’s game against parent club Scunthorpe.

Pressley believes tomorrow's Brunton Park game against the unbeaten visitors will show Carlisle where they are.

He said: “I’ve seen so many good things from our team this year. Whether it’s top table or mid-table, I’ve no concerns – I think on our day we can compete with any side.

“We are really looking forward to the challenge, and I think it will be a good marker for us. It will give us a clear indication of where we are and what we’re going to have to do to improve.”

Pressley said he has welcomed a week without a midweek match after a series of recent Tuesday games.

Carlisle’s boss said: “Without doubt it has come in the nick of time, for us all.

“For the staff, we were full-on for the four weeks. For some of the players that needed a game on Monday [the reserve friendly at Sunderland], it came at the right time. And I think for our players who’ve played every game it was a bit of breathing space for them.

“We’ve welcomed the week without a game. The first four weeks have been nothing short of relentless.”

Pressley said United must remain defensively tight today in any spells when Exeter are on top.

He said: “We’ve started games really well but had that 10-minute period when all the good work has been taken apart.

“At Scunthorpe we didn’t start particularly well but saw the period out. That’s why I think, when you have a little period in a game where you’re not doing so well, that’s the period we need to improve on.

“We need to be able to see those difficult periods through. In every 90 minutes you always get a period when the opposition have their hold on the game. That’s where we have to improve and make sure we don’t give up the goals.”

Pressley says he will consider Mo Sagaf’s claims for a first start in midfield.

He said: “He comes into my thinking because we’re playing at home, and we’ll miss the influence of [Stefan] Scougall in the number 10 position – he’s been very effective there.

“When we play away from home and when we play at home are two different games, and two different considerations.

“He [Sagaf]played at Sunderland and got 90 minutes under his belt. In terms of his overall performance it wasn’t quite at the levels but he’s getting there and it will take time.

“We’ve seen flashes that he is a good player with potential.”

Exeter manager Taylor has called on his side to show a killer instinct at Brunton Park.

The Grecians have not lost in six meetings against the Blues but were held to a 1-1 draw at Carlisle last season.

Speaking to DevonLive, Taylor said: “Carlisle had a fantastic result at Scunthorpe last week, they had a fantastic result against Barnsley [in the Carabao Cup] and beat them convincingly.

“They started the season well by beating Crawley and then picked up points against the likes of Salford.

“There are a couple of defeats in there as well, so you might say it is a mixed bag, but they are a team that has really good players and a good manager that wants to get a style of play into them.

“It’s always a good pitch – and a big pitch – when we go there, hopefully it’s a good day in terms of good football on show.

“Last season, we went there and dominated for 45 minutes, but couldn’t kill them off and they came back so strongly in the second half and it was probably a fair result on the day. But we were so disappointed we didn’t kill them off when we were on top in that first half.

“That’s something we have to learn from. If we are on top at any stage on Saturday, we have got to hurt the opposition

“It’s a good place to go with a good football pitch and I have a lot of time for a lot of people up in Carlisle. But we go there with some confidence behind us and we will try and win the game.”