BIG MATCH PREVIEW: Being ‘trapped in a corner’ will bring out the best in McCann

Peterborough United manager Grant McCann at Scunthorpe.
Peterborough United manager Grant McCann at Scunthorpe.
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Posh boss Grant McCann is convinced a return of the good times is just around the corner.

Speaking ahead of tomorrow’s big League One clash at the ABAX Stadium against leaders Shrewsbury Town, the manager said his side was good enough to inflict a first defeat of the season on the table-toppers.

And he went on to say Posh, despite picking up just one point from their last five games, still had promotion very much on their minds.

“Shrewsbury have been brilliant. They do the basics well. They defend well and they don’t concede many goals,” said McCann.

“It will be a difficult game but we can beat them, we know that.

“We’re getting very close to where we were in August and September. We were unlucky not to beat Southend and Scunthorpe. We are creating chances, we just need to be a bit more ruthless in front of goal.

“It’s a difficult time for everybody at the club and we were all disappointed after Saturday. But I’m of the firm belief that results will start turning. The boys will turn it round soon. We need to get back on track, back on the horse.”

Posh have dropped to 10th in the table but McCann insists they could be back in the thick of the promotion race again soon.

“Nothing’s changed - we are still challenging for promotion,” he said. “We are only six points off third place with a game in hand. It only takes a little bit of good fortune in a game to get over the line and then all of a sudden we’re back in the race.

“The top two (Shrewsbury and Wigan) have opened up an eight-point gap but they’re catchable. Everyone is going to have a dip in form at some stage. It’s a very unpredictable league.”

The Shrewsbury game starts ‘a massive two weeks’ for Posh according to McCann.

“The league leaders tomorrow then it’s FA Cup day next weekend and a Checkatrade Trophy match against Cambridge. They are three really important games for us that can make our season,” he said.

“If we win those game we can forget about October and kick on. And there’s no question this squad can achieve that.

“We’re working hard day and night. The players know how important it is to work hard. The ability is there. We just have to make sure our concentration levels are good and we’ve worked on that this week.”

After the defeat at Scunthorpe, McCann’s wife Kelly and her children were allegedly abused by so-called Posh fans. How did McCann react?

“I was calm,” he said. “I know the fans were hurting after that. No one was hurting more than me. After 80 minutes you’re a hero and then bang, bang and you’ve lost. Fans will show their frustration - that’s the nature of the beast.

“But we must all stay strong. Everybody at this club has to be united and we are.

“It’s a massive challenge and you’ve never seen me hide from anything in my life. Being trapped in a corner if you like has always brought the best out in me.”