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Saturday, 01 November 2014

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Carlisle United's Berrett on brink of return

James Berrett is on the brink of a timely comeback for Carlisle United as manager Greg Abbott battles three new injury problems.

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Nearly fit: Berrett

Captain Paul Thirlwell is the latest senior man to join the crocked list after he was subbed with a calf problem in the first half of yesterday’s victory against Hartlepool.

Chris Chantler, replaced in the closing stages, will also have his ankle assessed today, while Danny Cadamarteri is out for two weeks with a calf injury he suffered in training.

Abbott admitted Thirlwell’s injury was the most concerning as the 33-year-old midfielder has suffered from similar problems in the past.

“Chris turned his ankle but we hope he’ll be OK – but Paul’s a worry because it’s the dreaded calf again,” the United manager said.

“It seems I can’t have a run of selection problems – it’s just one out and one in all the time.

“But we have got James Berrett back nearly fit which is a plus.”

Berrett has been out with a groin injury but will now be scrutinised in the build-up to Saturday’s visit of Bury.

Abbott even had to get by without his assistant yesterday, with Graham Kavanagh suffering from a virus.

Goalkeeping coach Tony Caig acted as number two for the afternoon in Kavanagh’s absence, with Abbott himself overseeing the pre-match warm-ups.

United’s manager handed a long-awaited debut to loanee Sean McGinty late in the 3-0 win as Chantler had to come off.

There was also a first senior appearance for midfielder Josh Todd – the fourth home-grown player to earn his debut this season.

Abbott also admitted he had been preparing to give fit-again Rory Loy his first outing for exactly a year, before Chantler’s injury.

But the manager insisted he had been right not to throw the Scot on at an earlier stage.

“The result was paramount and the day wasn’t about sentiment,” said Abbott.

“We want Rory to get back on the pitch as soon as possible but we make the decisions for the right reasons.

“Hopefully people will forgive me for putting the result at the top of the priorities on this particular day.”

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