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Cheltenham Town boss Michael Duff tells his players ‘it’s a mentality’ ahead of long trip to Grimsby Town

Cheltenham Town are set to play their second game in four days when they travel to managerless Grimsby Town on Tuesday in their rescheduled League Two fixture.

Heavy rainfall stopped the fixture from going ahead in October, but now Michael Duff’s side will face The Mariners on Tuesday who parted with former boss Michael Jolley by mutual consent last week.

Despite occupying different ends of the table, Robins boss Michael Duff believes the match could still prove to be difficult but hopes his players have the mentality to pull them through.

He said: “It’s more of a banana skin than anything else because people have the perception that we’re going well and their struggling so you will win the game.

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“It’s a long way to go. We got beat there last year and it’s the caretakers first game at home since all of the stuff happened with Michael so you just don’t know what your going to get.”

Duff was seen to sympathise with Jolley despite his foul-mouthed rant which saw him include 58 swear words in a response to a reporter.

Both men knew each other from their time at Burnley, where Duff took over the Under-23’s from Jolley who left to manage in the North East.

The Cheltenham boss was keen to reiterate that no managerial job is easy in the modern era, especially at the lower leagues.

“Having a foot in at a Premier League club, the pressure they face on a match day is immense but at our level you have so many fingers in so many pies and you’ve got to try and win the game as well so it is difficult,” Duff said.

“I’ve texted Michael a couple of times since it happened. I think he just felt the negativity in the area.”

Anthony Limbrick will be in the opposition dugout as caretaker manager when Cheltenham arrive on Tuesday, as Grimsby continue their search for a successor.

Having only played Colchester on Saturday in a 1-1 draw at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium, Cheltenham have had only two days to prepare for the next fixture.

Despite the fixtures coming thick and fast, Duff appears to be trying to implement a ‘can-do’ attitude amongst his squad.

Speaking about the mentality of his players coping with an influx of fixtures, the manager said: “It’s a mentality.

“If your injured then your injured, but if you start thinking you’re a bit tired and it’s a long way to go then the next bloke thinks the same and then the next bloke thinks the same, just get on with it.

“Your legs will go wherever your mind tells them to.”

The boss did, however, speak of how his players are focused on picking up the three points to potentially move them into third place.

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