PETER Hartley has set his sights on a successful, rewarding and caution-free Christmas period.The start of the Greens’ festive period begins on Saturday as they host Dagenham & Redbridge, where Hartley will lead the team out as captain, due to Curtis Nelson being sidelined through injury.
Following that, John Sheridan’s side will face Newport County and Oxford United on the 26th and 28th of December, respectively, before a trip to York City for their first fixture of 2015.
Whilst many may shirk at the prospect of multiple games in week, Hartley believes that both he and the squad are relishing the prospect of playing instead of training.
“If I could play three or four games a week, I would rather do that than train,” said Peter. “That is when your rewards come.
“You can train all you want, but I think the boys in there will relish the three or four games in a short space of time that we have.
“A lot of them will prefer that, because you are playing and recovering, playing then recovering again. Especially if you are winning games, you just cannot wait for the next game to come, and sometimes a week is too long.
“When you have had a good result on Saturday, I wish there was just another game Tuesday, to get another three points. Fortunately, we will be in that situation over Christmas, so we have just got to make sure we pick up the points.”
From a personal point of view, Hartley is keen to not just pick up some vital points over the coming fortnight, but to avoid adding to the six bookings he has picked up so far this season.
“My aim is to get through this Christmas period unscratched – no yellow cards, stay on my feet and keep my mouth shut at referees,” he said.
“Sometimes you get caught up in the moment when you want to win games. You have got that competitive edge on the pitch, but the refs are human – they are going to make mistakes.
“It is one of those things, and it just the type of person I am, but I will definitely be bringing that down a notch or two, and keeping my discipline in order.”