Scunthorpe United v Harrogate Town: Calum Kavanagh and Will Smith in contention to start

Harrogate Town striker Calum Kavanagh in action against Bradford City earlier this season. Pictures: Matt KirkhamHarrogate Town striker Calum Kavanagh in action against Bradford City earlier this season. Pictures: Matt Kirkham
Harrogate Town striker Calum Kavanagh in action against Bradford City earlier this season. Pictures: Matt Kirkham
Simon Weaver is set to ring the changes when Harrogate Town visit Scunthorpe United on Saturday, aiming to end their seven-match winless run.

The Sulphurites chief was extremely unhappy with his side’s level of performance during Tuesday’s 3-0 home defeat to Leyton Orient and went on to question whether playing three games in the space of a week is too much for certain members of his squad.

Consequently, he has suggested that he is considering bringing at least a couple of players into his starting line-up at Glanford Park this weekend.

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"I think that the addition of one or two might freshen it up and maybe they'll have a point to prove as well," Weaver said.

Harrogate Town manager Simon Weaver.Harrogate Town manager Simon Weaver.
Harrogate Town manager Simon Weaver.

"It's always positive energy that we want on the pitch, and clear thinking.

“I think Calum Kavanagh will start on Saturday because he came on and looked lively again.

“He showed a bit of spark again and he deserves to start the next game. His reaction to losing the ball and the way he chased back was on a different level to some others and that’s the minimum we expect.

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“At the back, Will [Smith] has just come back from illness and came on and did alright and will be right in contention because we’ve conceded three goals without him."

Asked whether he plans to rotate further given his concerns about certain players struggling to cope with the demands of playing Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday, Weaver said he didn't believe it was possible to make changes in certain areas.

"There's been no respite for certain individuals and it takes it toll. There has been a huge demand on some of them and a lot of travelling too," he added.

“But, we don’t have a 30-man squad to be able to rotate in lots of different positions, even though I think that three games in succession is too much for some. It’s a difficult one when you look at where we have got the injuries and think where you would rotate it.

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“Are you going to take out Thommo [George Thomson] and Patto [Alex Pattison] when we are without Falks [Josh Falkingham] and throw a young lad like Josh Austerfield into the centre of midfield? Is it the right time? Probably not.”

Scunthorpe currently sit bottom of the League Two standings having won just four of the 38 games they have played this term.

But, Town’s own recent form is similarly wretched, with Weaver warning that his players will “have to come out fighting” if they want a result in North Lincolnshire.

"Everybody has got to hold their nerve, including me," he continued.

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"I have to look at myself and think what can we do better and we have to improve as a management staff to be able to get the lads believing again.

"We're looking forward to being really positive on Saturday. We want to score goals from now until the end of the season and try and really set the record straight and show that we are better than the results are suggesting at the minute.

"I just want a really positive performance more than anything. You can't always control the score, but hopefully it takes care of itself if we come out all guns blazing, play positive football and don't go in our shells."