News & Star column 04.02.21

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United supporters dreaming of promotion were given a rude awakening by a streetwise Forest Green in midweek.

The Blues narrowly lost a hard fought match against one of the promotion favourites.

You still wouldn’t bet against us finishing above them in the League Two table come the end of the season – we are only three points behind and have three games in hand.

Indeed, you wouldn’t swap our position with any of our rivals. We are still third and have games in hand on them all.

On the night, our extended January break probably caught up with some of the players as we lacked a bit of our usual dynamism.

 With Saturday’s match at Cheltenham postponed because of a Covid outbreak in the home camp we have a chance to dust ourselves down and regroup.

Next up is Leyton Orient at Brunton Park on Tuesday (6.30pm kick-off) followed by another home match against Crawley (3pm kick-off) the following Saturday.

Both are winnable games and give us a chance to bounce back.

Let’s hope they go ahead. With players being tested twice a week now for Covid there is likely to be outbreaks at more clubs. So far, the English Football League is not considering extending the season.

Fans are logging into iFollow in big numbers to watch the Blues. It costs £10 for a match pass with £8 going to the club.

If you would also like to be in Brunton Park in spirit don’t forget ‘Face in the Crowd’.

The joint initiative between the club and CUOSC has proved popular and more than 250 cut-outs are on display in the Pioneer Stand.

It’s a great way to show your support with profits going to the club as part of CUOSC’s Carlisle REUnited fund-raising effort. The cost is £25 and to find out more or to place an order go to: www.faceinthecrowd.store

Supporters were delighted to see transfer deadline day pass quietly at Brunton Park with no surprise late exits. Fortunately, the Blues did their transfer business early.

The sale of ex-United striker Sam Cosgrove from Aberdeen to Birmingham for a reported £2million was also good news.

The club have not commented officially but they have said in the past they hold a ‘financial interest’ in Cosgrove and the move should bring in more much-needed revenue.