Peterborough United are entering phase two of their promotion plan as they prepare for tough winter fixtures at Blackpool tomorrow (November 2) and Shrewsbury on Tuesday (November 5).
Phase one has been a success as Posh sit third in League One just two points off top spot, but manager Darren Ferguson believes his side now need to show they they can dig results out on the road in unpleasant weather conditions.
The boss insists they can. He’s taken the squad up to Manchester United’s famous Carrington training centre to finalise preparations for tomorrow’s match at Bloomfield Road.
“November and December are notoriously tricky months,” Ferguson stated. “November is a bit different for us this year as we don’t have many league fixtures, but the ones we do have are very tough.
“That’s the first thing I pointed out to the players when we met at the start of the week. These next two games are very important to us as we don’t have a league match for 18 days after the Shrewsbury match and we want to return to action still in touch with the leading teams.
“The League One season is a 10-month slog physically and mentally and we will have to bo spot on in both areas as the weather turns colder and we meet some very good sides at their own grounds.
“We showed a lot of character to come back from almost certain defeat against Coventry last weekend and we showed at Gillingam recently we can tough wins out when we don’t play well.
“We will need the same spirit and character tomorrow against a very good side with a very good and experienced manager.
“We have worked on formations that have caused us problems so far this season and we have worked on our own formations. We are comfortable in a midfield diamond and we enjoy playing it, but we have other formations we can switch to if needed.”
Posh have only a slight injury doubt about teenage midfielder Kyle Barker tomorrow and Ferguson remains relaxed about keeping his star players in January as well as adding to the squad.
“I signed some good characters in the summer,” Ferguson added. “That character is all important to me. I have not signed some very good players in the past because of it.
“The players are always made aware of how I work and what I expect.
“The board supported me in the summer by financing the arrival of important players like Mo Eisa and Frankie Kent and by turning a big bid down for Ivan Toney.
“It’s interesting how players react to bids turning down. Ivan was as good as gold and took in his stride whereas lee Tomlin smashed my office up!”
Posh turned down a £4 million bid from an unnamed Championship club in August. They rejected a bid from Celtic for Tomlin in 2013.