Murray expects ‘added edge’ as Carlisle players square up to former boss Curle

Keith Curle managed Carlisle United for more than three years, before leaving the club last summer
Keith Curle managed Carlisle United for more than three years, before leaving the club last summer

Joint caretaker boss Paul Murray admits there will be ‘emotion’ and ‘an added edge’ when the Carlisle United players come up against their former boss Keith Curle on Saturday.

The Cobblers entertain the Cumbrians at the PTS Academy Stadium in Sky Bet League Two, and it will be the first time that Curle has come up against the club he left last summer.

Cobblers boss Keith Curle

Cobblers boss Keith Curle

The majority of the Carlisle squad that will take to the pitch this weekend were signed by Curle, and although Murray admits the 55-year-old is ‘well liked’ by the Cumbrians’ players, he says they will be desperate to get one over him.

And he knows Curle will be aiming to get one over his Carlisle team as well.

“We’ve worked with the lads on what we want to do on Saturday,” said Murray, who is in joint caretaker charge along with Tommy Wright following John Sheridan’s resignation last week.

“There’ll be a bit of emotion involved with Keith being there and I’m sure he’ll want to put one over on us.

I think Keith was pretty well liked by the players and the fans but there is always a bit of added edge when you face a former manager. He’ll want to get one over on us

Carlisle joint caretaker boss Paul Murray

“We’ll prepare properly, as we have all season, and we’ll be going for that seventh victory, if we can get it.

“I think Keith was pretty well liked by the players and the fans but there is always a bit of added edge when you face a former-manager.

“He’ll want to get one over on us and we want to continue our run.

“We’re all just concentrating on going down there and trying to win the game and we’ll see where we go from there.

“We’re looking to keep the momentum going for the whole club because we want to keep people smiling.”

Promotion-chasing Carlisle are targeting their seventh win in a row, and although Murray says confidence is high he admits he is wary of the Cobblers - and also of what team and formation Curle will utilise against them.

“Northampton are a team that’s been hard to beat,” said Murray.

“They’ve had four draws, two defeats and a win in the last seven, and obviously they lost in the Checkatrade on Tuesday night.

“It’ll be a good game tactically, but we’ve been scoring freely and playing some good football, and we’ll look to carry that on.

“The interesting thing is that we don’t know what he (Curle) will do.

“We know they’ve been playing three at the back but he could change it, who knows. We’ll just have to wait and see but we think, with the confidence in the side, we’ll be ready to go and it’s one we’re looking forward to.”