MATCH PREVIEW: It’s time for the players to start earning their money

Gwion Edwards celebrates his goal against Charlton last season.
Gwion Edwards celebrates his goal against Charlton last season.
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Peterborough United manager Grant McCann has told his fringe players it’s time to ‘earn their money.’

McCann is set to freshen up his starting line-up for tonight’s tough League One clash at Charlton (November 28, 7.45pm).

Goalkeeper Jonathan Bond could return to the Posh starting line-up at Charlton.

Goalkeeper Jonathan Bond could return to the Posh starting line-up at Charlton.

Goalkeeper Jonathan Bond, striker Ricky Miller and midfielder Chris Forrester are among those who could be called up following Saturday’s poor display in defeat at Rochdale. Key midfielder Gwion Edwards, who scored in this fixture last season, will return after serving a one-match suspension.

Whoever plays, McCann is expecting a far better performance as Posh strive to stay in touch with the top six. Posh are currently eighth, six points behind tonight’s sixth-placed opponents.

“We have played a lot of games in quick succession recently,” McCann stated. “We have some tired bodies and some tired legs. We have had some players carrying niggles into matches.

“That’s not an excuse as such because it’s why we have built a squad we believe is capable of challenging strongly for promotion.

Ricky Miller could be in line for a recall to the Posh team for the game at Charlton.

Ricky Miller could be in line for a recall to the Posh team for the game at Charlton.

“It’s now time to utilise that squad. It’s time for some to start earning their money as it were. It’s why they are here and why they earn good money to be here.

“We have to trust the players we have in the building

“It’s up to me to get the right team on the pitch so we can have a good go at Charlton.”

The appetite and workrate of some players came under scrutiny in some quarters after the 2-0 defeat at Rochdale.

But McCann insists attitude is not a problem within his squad.

“It was a performance at Rochdale that left us all scratching our heads,” McCann added. “And that includes the players, It just wasn’t us. We never looked like creating a chance, never mind scoring a goal.

“But I have never questioned the workrate or the players’ appetite. The problem at Rochdale was more a lack of quality and individual errors. They are the problems we have to solve.

“I want my players to express themselves and to work hard. When they get everything right we deliver performances like we did when beating Wigan at home and Northampton away.

“You can look at the season so far in anyway you want. There have been some good performances and some very average performances, but nothing is won in November. We have one aim this season and that is promotion and as long as we stick together as a club we will go on to enjoy a good season. It’s a long old season.

“It’s a game to look forward to tonight against a team certain to be up there challenging for honours at the end of the season.

“It’s a very difficult game, but if we perform to our best we can win. It will be two teams trying to get the ball down to play attacking football and we must make sure our threats are in the game regularly.

“In Marcus Maddison and Jack Marriott we have two players who have scored 20 goals between them. That should worry any opponent.”

A point would take Posh back above Portsmouth into seventh place, providing Blackpool don’t beat Blackburn in tonight’s other League One match.