Peterborough United manager Grant McCann admits it would be impossible for his team to play as badly again as they did in Saturday’s (November 4) FA Cup draw with Tranmere at the ABAX Stadium
Posh escaped with a 1-1 draw against the National League outfit and get a quick shot at redemption when travelling to local rivals Cambridge United for their final Checkatrade Trophy group match tonight (November 7, 7.45pm).
Posh are keen to make progress in a much-maligned competition especially as they will be backed by over 1,000 travelling fans, many attracted by a first competitive visit to the Abbey Stadium since 2001.
All four teams in a group that also contains Northampton and Southampton Under 21s can still qualify for the knockout stages, but a draw definitely takes Posh through.
Cambridge need to beat Posh by two goals to have any chance of qualification, but they tackle Posh just 48 hours after an FA Cup tie against Sutton United.
“We can’t play as badly again as we did on Saturday,” McCann stated. “It was a disappointing result from a disappointing performance and to be honest we did well to still be in the competition.
“We were that bad we should have been beaten. We were all poor, including myself, and a draw was more than we deserved.
“But we have dusted ourselves off and we will be ready to go again tonight.
“We are treating this as a big game. It’s a local derby and the number of our fans travelling on a Tuesday night is superb. We haven’t played there for so long, it’s obviously a big match for the fans so we want to put on a performance and get the right result.
“Local derbies are the best games to play in and we haven’t lost one for a while so we want to keep that record going.
“We want to make progress in this competition.”
Cambridge are likely to field a much-changed side. Posh are expected to give striker Rilly Miller and attacking midfielder Danny Lloyd run outs. Lloyd scored his only Posh goal in the last Checkatrade Trophy tie against Northampton.
“Whatever Cambridge do is not my concern,” McCann added. “My focus is 100 per cent on picking a team to win this game.
“I won’t take a risk on anyone who isn’t 100 per cent fit though. We won’t be able to carry any players in a game against Cambridge.
“There are players pushing to be included, but also don’t forget we were very good in our last League One match.”