Morecambe's start to the new season could have been even better

Stephen Robinson believes his Morecambe players could have been in and around the top end of the League One table after the first month.

Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 8:00 am

The Shrimps presently sit 15th in the table with seven points from their first five games as a third tier club.

Those points have come via victories against Shrewsbury Town and Sheffield Wednesday, and a draw at Ipswich Town – when they conceded in stoppage time – as well as defeats to Rotherham United and Gillingham.

Written off as relegation certainties by the vast majority of pundits, the Shrimps have shown that, even if those predictions do come true, it won’t be without a fight.

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“We take it in five-game blocks and it’s been a positive start,” Robinson said.

“I believe we could have won every game we have played apart from the Rotherham one.

“We’ve got seven points so far, which is good, but I think it could have been better.

“As I’ve said before, football is a strange game. The worst we’ve played for 45 minutes was a game where we ended up winning against Sheffield Wednesday.

“I think people have recognised we’re a decent squad and we have an attractive style of play.

“It’s something we will continue to work on but it’s only early in the season – it’s been a positive start but we can’t get carried away.”

As Robinson alluded to, as well as a new manager, the players left over from last season have also had to take a new style of play on board.

Gone is the more pragmatic approach employed by Robinson’s predecessor, Derek Adams.

That said, it was one which saw them win promotion via the play-offs after posting a club-record points tally in the regular season.

A more possession-based style is now being deployed with Morecambe’s defenders encouraged to play out from the back.

It might be a departure from what some have been used to but Robinson is encouraged by the early signs.

He said: “They have taken it on board very well so far.

“You look at someone like Sam Lavelle and, before he left, I spoke to him and he said his game had improved no end.

“It was a successful style they played last year and that shouldn’t be forgotten but I think the way we want to play is brave because people do make mistakes.

“I love the way we play but I do think we can still be better and braver. We have to accommodate players who fit into that approach.

“You have to have full-backs and defenders who can pass the ball but, first and foremost, they have to be able to defend.

“All the defenders we’ve got are comfortable on the ball and I do believe we’ve recruited well in that regard.”

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