Football Focus

THE Green Army could probably tell you in a lot less than a minute – without hesitation, repetition or deviation...

...exactly who Oxford, Bristol Rovers, Accrington, Portsmouth and Wycombe are playing this weekend.

So, you suspect, can Derek Adams. However, the Argyle manager also knows that his Pilgrims’ fate is currently theirs to dictate: positioned in the last of the automatic Sky Bet League 2 promotion slots going into Saturday’s game at Exeter City, they have their noses in front of most of their similarly aspirational peers.

“We are looking at our own result,” he said. “We have got a lot in our own hands because of the position we are in. If we win enough games, then we will do very well this season. 

“That has been the outlook since the start of the season; we have got a lot of good games coming up and we want to win.

“We’ve got strong characters in the dressing-room and have performed very well this season. We have been able to pick up a lot of victories, at home and away from home, and it has set us up very well for the remaining games.

“At this stage of the season, it is always very tight. There are a lot of teams fighting at the bottom end of the table; in the middle of the table, trying to get into the play-off places; and ones that are trying to get into the automatic places.”

Devon Expressway Derby rivals Exeter fit into the middle of those categories, thanks largely to their excellent away record – they have only won once at St James Park since October. Argyle, too, have an enviable record on their travels. However, everyone knows the destination of form books on derby days.

Derek said: “We have got a very good away record – we enjoy going away from home – but, in a derby match, form really goes out of the window. Both teams are going in with decent form.

“Exeter have come off a very good win on Monday, against Crawley, and both teams go in off of wins. That puts both teams in a positive frame of mind and both will want to win.

“We’ve won 10 games away from home, which is outstanding; we want to go there and win. You can look at all the stats and all the form guide, and everything, but it’s a derby match and both sides go in to it on a good bit of form.

“We’re very motivated to keep going and picking up the points that we need to put ourselves in a very good position.

“We’ll need to continue the way we’re playing: we’re scoring goals and have defended well, as well, and, in a derby match, you will need to do that.”