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League One

Graham Kavanagh: Performances must improve

22 March 2014

Carlisle United boss Graham Kavanagh insists his players have to start walking the walk after they dropped into the League 1 relegation zone with a 4-1 defeat at bottom club Notts County.

Magpies defender Haydn Hollis struck twice while Ronan Murray and Gary Liddle were also on target for the home side who stay bottom despite the emphatic victory.

James Berrett did pull one back for the Cumbrians but they are now winless in their last six and slide into the fourth and final spot in the drop zone.

And Kavanagh admits his side will have to buck up their ideas and quickly to avoid the scarring career experience of relegation.

"I've asked the players if they were prepared to do the work and the answer was yes," he said.

"But the talking has to stop. Actions are louder than words. I'm getting all the right feedback but you have to understand a lot of them have never been through this.

"The impact relegation can have on a career can take a long time to get over. It has an impact.

"We are in the bottom four and the only way we can improve is by working hard.

"If you can't work hard then it's an absolute waste of time. They've done that for the majority of games and all we can do is go again.

"There were some very good Notts County players on show and they had been struggling for confidence.

"But once they got the first goal and then the second, they played with freedom. We did the exact opposite. We weren't together, we weren't compact, we weren't aggressive, we let people run beyond us and if that's a slight on me then I'll take it on the chin."

For County boss Shaun Derry the emphatic win was bittersweet, ending a six-match unbeaten run but not enough to take his side off the bottom.

"It was a tetchy opening for the first 20 minutes and the magnitude of the game was there for everyone to see," he said.

"But we managed to settle ourselves down and the scoreline obviously suggests we were the better team by far.

"People will probably look at my reactions to the goals and say 'he should be celebrating' but it just frustrates me when I know what these players are capable of.

"I see it every day in training and it frustrates me when I see a second-half performance like that and you just wonder why we just couldn't be consistent.

"I'm just hoping we can take this performance and scoreline into Tuesday's game against Crewe which is another big game for us."


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