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Canny Devonshire has Irons in the fire

By Braintree Chronicle  |  Posted: April 19, 2012

DOUBTFUL: Iron full-back Aswad Thomas, pictured beating Luton Town's Keith Keane to the ball in the last home game, has been one of the most consistent players this season but looks set to miss the York City game on Saturday through injury CMAP20120407H-019_C

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BRAINTREE Town manager Alan Devonshire is looking for his side to cause another upset against another Blue Square Bet Premier play-off side when the Iron take on York City at the Alim Stadium on Saturday.

The Ministermen won at Cambridge Utd 1-0 on Tuesday to move up to fourth place but Devonshire wants his side to repeat their performance and a scoreline of 3-1 against Luton Town earlier this month.

"They are obviously going well and winning on Tuesday puts them firmly into the play-offs but I want the side to do well and end our home game with a win on Saturday," he said. "The shift they put in against Luton was tremendous and it would be nice to repeat that victory, particularly for the home fans who have been so supportive this season."

Devonshire hopes to have a full squad available with Adam Bailey-Dennis back from suspension although Aswad Thomas has not fully recovered from his knee injury.

"We'll see how he goes but I think he's unlikely to feature against York," he said. "But we have players capable of playing in different positions as we've been forced to this season so we'll have a good side intent on going out and winning."

Devonshire also has memories of the Iron's visit to York City back in October when they lost 6-2 in what he afterwards described as "a bad day at the office".

With promotion-chasing Wrexham to come in their final game on Saturday week Devonshire is realistic enough to know that both opposition sides are strong and will want to win.

"There's no pressure on us because we've achieved what we set out to do and that was consolidate in this league after last year's promotion," he added. "We're now comfortably in 12th place and that's quite satisfying for me and I'm sure for everyone at the club." He added: "Hopefully, we can end on a high note which is what all clubs want."

Devonshire though is already looking ahead to next season and it is understood he is keen to bring in three or four new faces to strengthen his squad.

"I'm already talking to the current players but it's early days and nothing will be decided until the season is over," he explained. "Some of the players will keep their options open which is understandable but we do have targets in mind to strengthen and hopefully they will be on board by the end of May. I think there will a lot of players being released by Football League clubs next month because under new rules they will have to cut their cloth accordingly and so the market wil be full of players looking for a new clubs."

But the canny Devonshire knows that you have to be careful when bringing in new players and he will have to stick to the Iron's strict playing budget.

"I'm not expecting us to bring in loads of new players – we simply don't need them but we do need to strengthen in one or two areas," he added.

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