MATCH PREVIEW: Smith says ignore the speculation, focus on Swindon

Michael Smith in action for Posh against Bolton.
Michael Smith in action for Posh against Bolton.
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Experienced full-back Michael Smith insists constant transfer speculation won’t unsettle a young and gifted Posh squad.

The Northern Ireland international is adamant the inevitable interest in skipper Chris Forrester and teenage midfielder Leo Da Silva Lopes didn’t play a part in last Saturday’s (January 14) horrible 5-1 hammering at Bury.

Michael Smith tries to hide his disappointment after the Bury game.

Michael Smith tries to hide his disappointment after the Bury game.

Smith also claims that result has already been forgotten as Posh set out on the road to redemption to Swindon on Saturday (January 21).

“Transfer speculation won’t be a problem for us,” Smith stated.

“It’s part of football. With the young talent we have at this club, there will always be other teams sniffing around.

“It’s up to the players themselves to keep their feet on the ground and it’s up to the rest of us to help them.

Posh teenager Leo Da Silva Lopes has been the subject of transfer speculation.

Posh teenager Leo Da Silva Lopes has been the subject of transfer speculation.

“We have a sensible set of lads here and a manager who won’t let anyone get ahead of themselves.

“We actually went to Bury full of confidence, but it was just one of those days when things just didn’t happen for us.

“But the manager has been very good this week. Grant McCann will never change. He has a great football brain.

“There is a certain way he wants us to play and he has drummed that back into us individually and as a team this week.

“He sent us away for the weekend to reflect on the Bury game and to make sure we returned refreshed and ready to concentrate on Swindon.

“Games are coming thick and fast now and the manager has reminded us all of our roles within the system.

“It’s important we get back to our best form as soon as possible. We didn’t lose over Christmas, but we still had some disappointing draws which made the Bury defeat more disappointing.”

Posh boss McCann doesn’t believe his players will have their heads turned by reported interest in them from bigger clubs.

“My advice to my players is to not necessarily believe the hype,” McCann said. “It’s important your head isn’t turned by speculation as there’s always the possibility it doesn’t lead to anything.

“To be fair I don’t think my players are like that. They had a bad day at Bury, but they have been focused and in good spirits since they came back to work on Monday. I’m sure we will get a positive reaction.”