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Tuesday, 16 September 2014

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Carlisle Utd boss facing striker decision

Rory Loy, Mark Beck and Danny Cadamarteri are vying for the vacant place up front alongside fit-again targetman Lee Miller at Scunthorpe tomorrow.

Danny Cadamarteri photo
Danny Cadamarteri

Carlisle boss Greg Abbott needs to plug the gap left by loan striker Joe Garner, who returned to Watford on Monday at the end of his loan spell. Abbott wants to bring Garner back in January, but will have to do without him for the festive programme. Garner’s exit has opened the way for Loy, Beck and Cadamarteri to stake a claim for a place at Scunthorpe.

Another option for Abbott is to restore the successful three-pronged attack with Loy and JP McGovern on each flank with Miller the pivotal attacker – a system which proved highly successful in the first half of last season. Loy missed last week’s 2-1 defeat to Shrewsbury with a back injury but is expected to be fit for tomorrow’s trip.

Garner had talks with Watford boss Gianfranco Zola on Monday and the signs from Vicarage Road are that the 24-year-old will be allowed to leave in January.

Abbott would love to pair up Garner and Miller – restoring a partnership the pair enjoyed for Scunthorpe. But Carlisle are certain to face competition for Garner’s signature as he will have caught the eye of rival clubs with his eight goals in 18 games on loan at Brunton Park.

James Berrett, who has missed the last three games with a groin injury, has taken a step closer to a comeback. He has not returned to the training pitch but is doing jogging and strengthening work and will have another scan to assess the injury.

Central defender Peter Murphy, who underwent a hernia operation three weeks ago, is still ruled out. Murphy’s absence and Derby’s decision to recall teenager Val Gjokaj from his loan spell have sparked fears of a defensive crisis at Carlisle if first-choice centre halves Danny Livesey and Mike Edwards are hit by injury.

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