Buckle unfazed by O’Connor’s goal threat

Town boss Paul Buckle isn’t overly concerned with the threat former Hatters forward Aaron O’Connor will pose his side in tonight’s crunch Blue Square Bet Premier clash, writes Mike Simmonds.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 11th December 2012, 11:03 am

The 29-year-old has been on fire since his summer move from Kenilworth Road to Rodney Parade, netting 14 goals.

He joined another ex-Town striker Danny Crow at Rodney Parade, who misses out through injury, but Buckle said: “They’re not with us anymore so I’m not too fussed about that.

“I certainly didn’t ask him to leave, he wanted to move on and I won’t stand in the way of any players as long as it suits the club and doesn’t hurt us.

“If someone doesn’t want to play for us then you let them move on.

“We’re confident in replacing players if they want to move on and have always done that.

“We’re more than happy with the return of all our strikers and now we’ve got Jon Shaw back as well.

“Justin Edinburgh has got good experience of this division, he’s brought a lot of players to the club but I always concentrate on us.

“I don’t like to talk about the opposition too much, I don’t know what’s going on at their place. My focus is on our team and at the moment, we’re doing a lot of things right which is encouraging for us.”

Victory would see Town right back in the title hunt, level on points with Newport and just one away from leaders Grimsby Town.

Buckle tried to play down the significance of the clash though as he continued: “I think we’ve still got a game in hand, but I’ve not paid too much attention to it.

“I’ve not got too high or too low this season as there’s such a long way to go. They’re all important games, nothing will be decided after this one, so we’ll approach it in the same manner as our away record is very good.

“Players are aware of positions in the league, but I don’t think the league will sort itself out until January.”

“I’m happy where are, we’re going to have to keep a steady ship, focus on the next game, that’s what we do.”

Tonight’s trip starts a run of three away games for the Hatters as they travel to Matlock Town in the FA Trophy and then visit AFC Telford in the league.

With almost a fully fit squad to choose from now though, Buckle is ready for the test.

He added: “We’re getting used to it as we seem to be playing away quite a lot. The key is to get consistency home and away and players certainly don’t fear going away from home.”

“We’ve only got a couple of knocks which is really good coming to an important part of the season.

“There’s a lot of games in quick succession and it’s important to have enough bodies around and everybody doing very well.

“The hardest part for me is leaving players out, that is difficult.

“But all the boys who have not been involved, on Saturday we didn’t see anyone sulking or had their heads down.

“I’m happy with our work-rate and I think that that and our desire is where it needs to be if you want to be successful.”

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