GREG Abbott wants Carlisle United to finish the season strongly and repay the fans’ patience after a season of ‘mediocrity.’
The Cumbrians have found themselves toiling at the wrong end of the table all season and Abbott admits it has been a testing time for everyone at the club.
However, with nine games still to go, United have a healthy nine-point safety cushion between themselves and the relegation zone and they can take another step towards guaranteeing safety at Leyton Orient this afternoon.
“None of us is happy with the league position and we have nine games now where, if we do it properly, we can end the season on a high,” Abbott (right) said.
“We said the other day perhaps we have to accept this has been our season of mediocrity, but there is still plenty for us to play for.
“The fans have stuck with us and we need to do what we can to pay them back for that.
“Finishing off the season with a nice run would be a good way of starting that process. “
Carlisle’s midweek game against League One leaders Doncaster was called off due to the freezing weather, but Abbott does not expect his side to lose focus as a result of the unscheduled break.
He added: “The Orient game is one we are all looking forward to, particularly with us having had the call-off at Doncaster.
“You take that on the chin, but then you make sure you get back into work in the right frame of mind because the last thing you want is to have people dwelling on the fact there wasn’t a game.”
Carlisle go into the game in 17th place, and having ended a six-match winless streak at Brentford last weekend. Orient are 10th and are not yet out of the play-off race, with three wins in an unbeaten run of five games lifting them to within six points of the top six.
Abbott said: “Orient have picked up some decent results since they had the disappointment of losing in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy area final.
“They are a team in a little bit of form at the moment.
“We know what to expect from them and we also know we are capable of getting something if we do our jobs.”
Lee Miller serves the final game of his suspension this afternoon.
New signing Mathieu Manset is also unavailable, the Blues still waiting for his international clearance to come through from Switzerland.