English League 2

Wycombe v Northampton preview

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Mon, 15 Apr 2013 18:32:00

Mario Gomez's agent says the striker is 'not happy' about his current situation, but remains 'loyal' to Bayern Munich.

The Germany international has been unable to reclaim his status as Bayern's first-choice striker after missing the opening three months of the season due to an ankle injury.

Summer signing Mario Mandzukic has impressed for the newly-crowned Bundesliga champions and that has prompted speculation that Gomez could leave.

The 27-year-old's representative Uli Ferber confirmed there is interest in Gomez, but stressed the former Stuttgart forward's priority is to force his way back into the Bayern side.

"Of course, Mario is not happy about his current situation," Ferber told BILD. "And it's obvious this cannot be any steady state for him.

"Mario is loyal to Bayern Munich, the club and the team's squad. He is always willing to help the club. He would deserve to see the manager put him on."

Ferber added: "There were always expressions of interest in the services of Mario.

"They were during his years at Stuttgart, right before his move to Bayern Munich, and right ahead of his most recent contract renewal. But also right now at this point in time."

Gomez is under contract at the Allianz Arena until 2016 after signing his most recent extension last year.

Cresswell, on loan at York since the middle of last month, sustained an Achilles injury during the Minstermen's weekend win at Northampton and is expected to miss the rest of the season.

York boss Nigel Worthington had hoped to keep the 35-year-old, who started his career at Bootham Crescent, until at least after their home against Southend on Saturday.

Morgan said: "Cressy is someone I always planned to recall because we need as many bodies as possible.

"I spoke to Nigel last Thursday and it was agreed Cressy would return after the game at Northampton.

"Unfortunately he picked up a whack on his Achilles and was forced to be substituted.

"He has limped around the training ground (on Monday), but still managed to contribute to the session.

"We aren't sure on the full extent of the damage, but the picture should be clearly after his diagnosis on Wednesday.

"When I recalled him I was keen to have his input and experience on the coaching side, but obviously before the injury I also considered him as a good option to have within the squad."

The Daggers went down 1-0 against Oxford at Victoria Road on Saturday, leaving them still without a win on home soil in five attempts since Burnett took the reins on an interim basis towards the end of February.

Just two wins in his 10 games at the helm have also left 17th-placed Dagenham still needing a couple more points to make sure of their League Two status.

And having scored a mediocre 10 goals in that 10-match spell - finding the net twice in the same game on just three occasions - Burnett is keen to see his team sharpen their attacking teeth.

Asked why they are struggling at home, Burnett told Daggers Player: "I've no idea. We've got a game plan, we're trying to get the ball down and move it quickly. I'm as frustrated as anyone.

"It's really difficult to put your finger on it but sometimes teams come here and sit with men behind the ball, we have to be a little bit cleverer to break them down and create chances.

"We need goalscorers, let's not hide the fact. At the moment we haven't got people who are putting the ball in the back of the net, but the argument would be are we creating enough chances for them? Probably not. So that's the difficult part."

Sheridan parted company with the Spireites at the end of August following a disappointing start to the season after relegation from League One.

However, he delivered silverware during his three years at the Proavct Stadium as Chesterfield won the League Two title in 2011 and lifted the Johnstone's Paint Trophy last year.

"I hope it goes well for John in terms of the reception he gets - certainly not the result," said Cook, who became Sheridan's permanent successor in October following Tommy Wright's spell as interim boss.

"John is a seasoned professional, he's had his times at this club and he's produced some fantastic nights for this football club, so I'd like to see him get a great reception.

"I think John's history and his managerial record at this club will show what he's done, which was obtain a championship winning team and a cup final win at Wembley - and I hope that doesn't go amiss on our supporters. I'm sure it won't."

Sheridan returned to management with the Pilgrims in January with the Devon club in the relegation zone. Going into Tuesday night's game, Argyle are 19th in the table and three points above the bottom two.

And Henry admitted he was "humbled" by their dignity.

The American, significantly making his first appearance at the annual service to remember those who died in the 1989 disaster, gave a reading before addressing thousands assembled on the Kop at Anfield.

"I can understand the importance of the 96 to the club," Henry said.

"I have been humbled by the dignity and perseverance of the families in their search for truth and justice.

"It is an honour to be here on this particular day, the first service since the publication of the Hillsborough Independent Panel's report.

"Now there is a real belief that justice will be served.

"This club will always cherish the memory of family and friends lost 24 years ago today. They will forever be part of Liverpool Football Club."

Henry's reading was followed later in the afternoon by Everton chairman Bill Kenwright, symbolising the way in which the city had been united in both grief and the subsequent quest for justice.

"I hope since that day you have known the support of Everton Football Club for you," he said.

"I hope by this time next year you will be celebrating the greatest victory that a team in this country could do."

Henry and Kenwright were joined by Liverpool chairman Tom Werner, manager Brendan Rodgers, backroom staff and players in the Kop in front of thousands of members of the public, some carrying banners, many wearing the colours of Liverpool and also plenty in Everton blue.

Many former players who attended, including Kenny Dalglish, who was also the manager at the time of Hillsborough and returned to the club for a second spell in 2011, Alan Hansen, who played in the ill-fated semi-final, and Kevin Keegan.

The arrival of the Hillsborough families, en masse, prompted a prolonged standing ovation from the members of the public seated immediately behind them on the Kop.

This was the first anniversary to be marked after the publication of the Hillsborough Independent Panel's report into the 1989 disaster.

The findings once and for all absolved fans of any wrongdoing in the tragedy, instead highlighting the failings and subsequent cover-up by the police and other agencies.

Families had campaigned long and hard for the truth to be made public and while the report was the first step on that road there remains a long way to go.

Later this month there will be a preliminary hearing in London to decide the parameters for a new inquest after the original verdicts were quashed last year.

That process could realistically take a couple of years but, unlike this time 12 months ago, the Hillsborough families can at least now feel fully vindicated that their determined campaigning for the lies to be exposed will not be in vain.

Margaret Aspinall, chairman of the Hillsborough Family Support Group, said the cover-up of the disaster "will be a stain on this nation and certain individuals - and they know who they are".

She added: "It is a real honour to be able to stand in front of you today and say after nearly a quarter of a century the real truth is out, a truth that finally puts the record straight. Now justice must follow.

"It has taken 8,551 dark days and a report incorporating 395 pages to finally expose what we all knew from day one - the fans were not blame."

Chairboys boss Gareth Ainsworth looks set to shuffle his pack as his side look for their fourth win in five games.

Ainsworth was delighted with his team's display in Saturday's 2-1 win over Aldershot but admitted he is keen to field a fresh 11 against the Cobblers.

"There could be a few changes because I don't want to make the same mistake of having tired legs out there and not be able to perform at 100%, but then again there might not be any," he told the club's official website.

One player who looks set to return to the squad is midfielder Stuart Lewis, who has completed his two-match ban for 10 yellow cards.

QPR loanee Bruno Andrade (illness) returned to action against the Shots while there were starts for Matt McClure and Dean Morgan (both hamstring) after the attacking duo had sat out Wycombe's last three games.

Chris Hackett will be fit for the visitors. The midfielder came off with a knock after 63 minutes of the Cobblers' surprise 2-0 home defeat to struggling York on Saturday.

He did not train on Monday but boss Aidy Boothroyd said Hackett will do some light training on Tuesday and will be involved in some capacity later that evening.

Should Hackett have to settle for a place on the bench, either Luke Guttridge or Lewis Hornby will come into the starting XI.

Striker Clive Platt is still hampered by a back problem but managed the final quarter of an hour as a substitute against York, and Boothroyd says he will continue to "treat him with kid gloves".

Captain Kelvin Langmead remains on the sidelines with a knee injury but the defender may come back into the reckoning when Northampton travel to Port Vale at the weekend.

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