FA cup places up for grabs

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Boss Neil Aspin has challenged his fringe players to force their way into his plans for Town’s FA Cup first round clash with Charlton Athletic by putting on a show at Barnoldswick in the County Cup tonight (7.45).

The Shay chief will make as many changes to his side as possible with the cup tie and Saturday’s Blue Square Bet North trip to Gloucester City in mind.

And that will give several players not only much-needed game time, but a chance to prove they are worthy of a place in the side to face the Addicks.

“I think all the players who play tonight will benefit from having a game,” said Aspin.

“And because of the FA Cup tie coming up they will all be trying to get into the team for that.

“In my experience, all players go onto the pitch trying to impress the manager.

“Having the extra focus of such a big game on the horizon can only help.”

Tyrone Thompson, a substitute in each of the three games in which he has featured since returning to the club, will get his first start in tonight’s tie.

And keeper Phil Senior, who lost his first team place to the returning Simon Eastwood at Solihull on Saturday, will also play.

Liam Needham and Gregg Anderson, who were unused subs in the FA Cup tie in the Midlands at the weekend, are set to start this evening.

It would be Anderson’s first game since he dislocated his shoulder in the game at Hinckley in early September.

Anton Foster, Scott Hogan and David Haggerty, who watched the Solihull game from the stands, also play.

And Jason St Juste, who has been limited to the bench in the last three games, could feature.

Aspin will check on the injury suffered by Lee Gregory at the weekend when he comes in for treatment.

With James Dean suspended after next weekend’s game and Danny Holland continuing to struggle with his knee, Gregory’s fitness will be a major discussion point in the build up to the Charlton game.

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