Plymouth aim to keep Town 'in the mire'

PLYMOUTH Argyle manager Paul Sturrock has set his sights on keeping Ipswich Town 'in the mire'.

Elvin King

PLYMOUTH Argyle manager Paul Sturrock has set his sights on keeping Ipswich Town 'in the mire'.

The bottom two sides meet in the Coca-Cola Championship at Home Park tomorrow (kick-off 3pm) with the Devon-based side just one point ahead of rock-bottom Blues.

“We want to put daylight between us and Ipswich, and keep as many people in the mire as possible,” said Sturrock.

“You can't wait on other people falling down. You have got to go and catch them up, and the only way you can do that is by winning football games.

“For 70 minutes against Bristol City on Tuesday, it was probably the most competent we have been this season. But then we shot ourselves in the foot again.

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“If we can take that same attitude and work rate, and add a bit of guile and a bit of luck, I'm confident we'll get a result tomorrow.”

Sturrock is pleased with how yesterday's first training session with new coach Paul Mariner went and that their partnership bodes well for the future.

“Paul and I had worked out all the training the night before so he just got into it,” said Sturrock.

“I thought it was important the players heard his voice, so he did a lot of the early stuff in the session and I took most of the later stuff.

“He has come here to be an influence to the team. He hasn't come here to be somebody who stands on the side and watches.

“He looked very competent on his first day. He did all the right things. I had a word with the players about the whole scenario beforehand and so we soldier on.”

Plymouth could recall Kari Arnason after his recovery from a torn hamstring sustained on September 27. The midfielder had been playing as a makeshift centre-back. They have lost their last two matches - at Blackpool and Bristol City - but won their previous two when they leapfrogged Town at the football of the table.

Wins at Peterborough and in their last home match against Scunthorpe gave Plymouth a timely lift after a poor start to the season.

Defenders Chris Barker (calf) and Reda Johnson (knee) are long-term casualties while central defender Marcel Seip is on loan at Blackpool - one of seven Argyle players currently on loan.

Plymouth have five players on loan at Home Park in defenders David Gray (Manchester United) and Shane Lowry (Aston Villa), midfielders Darcy Blake (Cardiff City) and Alan Judge (Blackburn Rovers) and striker Cillian Sheridan (Celtic).

They have won only three times at home this year and have not kept a clean sheet since the penultimate match of last season, a 0-0 draw at QPR on April 25.

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