Paul Tisdale welcomes Pierce Sweeney, Troy Archibald-Henville and Luke Croll back into the squad
Exeter City manager Paul Tisdale says Luke Croll, Pierce Sweeney and Troy Archibald-Henville are all available for selection at Grimsby Town on Saturday should they be needed.
Croll has not played since City’s 1-0 win over Leyton Orient in November and Pierce Sweeney has been out since picking up an ankle injury four days later at home to Luton Town on November 26, while Troy Archibald-Henville has not started a game this season due to a number of injury issues.
Tis has named a more settled back four during the past six weeks, with Troy Brown returning from injury and playing particularly well alongside Jordan Moore-Taylor. However, the City manager is pleased to have competition for places again and added that all his returning players are ready to go.
“Troy Brown has been back and made a big difference, Jordan Moore-Taylor is at the top of his game and (Craig) Woodman and (Jack) Stacey have also played well in full-back positions,” he said.
“But now, importantly, we have got (Pierce) Sweeney, (Troy) Archibald-Henville and (Luke) Croll all fit and looking for selection. We have got that back four that having been getting us results and we have now got competition for places and we have got strength in depth, so the players on the pitch need to keep at it.
“I have got no problem playing Sweeney, Archibald-Henville or Croll from the start. They’ll have to either earn that place or circumstances will have to create that opportunity, but they are all ready to go.”
With five wins and two draws from the last seven games, the mood in the City camp is positive. Ollie Watkins has been grabbing the headlines with five goals in the last four games, but Paul took time out to praise how the whole team is working together to create their goalscoring opportunities.
“The goalscorer will always be acknowledged first from the outside but in the dressing room we have spoken a lot in the past dozen games or so about the process we have to stick to in order to create goalscoring chances and put the ball in the back of the net,” he said.
“That is not just down to goalscorer – there are other players who have contributed hugely, particularly Reuben Reid. He has not scored the goals, but he has been part of the process and Liam McAlinden has created some goals in the last couple of games.
“Ollie has scored five goals in the past few weeks and David Wheeler has scored some goals but it makes a big difference when all the players are on the same page and playing as a team and I think we are at the moment.”