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1 March 2013

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Boss on hurdles to overcome, starting Saturday

They might be seven games without a win but there is hope.

There is a beacon of light for the Hatters in what seems a long, dark tunnel.

“When confidence is low, there are two ways of getting over that. One is to stay focused, do your job, work hard and if you’re good players, it will come right.”

They were the trusting words uttered by new Town boss John Still at Thursday afternoon’s press conference as he prepares for his first match in charge at Stockport tomorrow.

The 62-year-old arrives in the Kenilworth Road hot-seat with the side cast adrift of the Play-Offs and has a group of players desperate for a pick-me-up.

For Still it’s all about endeavour. Not even Dynamo, the Bradford-born magician-to-the-stars, could use his sleight of hand could make defeats against Braintree, Barrow and Dartford disappear.

John’s never seen him.  “The other way is there’s this fella that walks around with a magic wand and touches you and you’re all better – but I’m still waiting for him, I haven’t seen him ever.”

For his first task is to write off the Braintree game – “I was there, like a supporter: I couldn’t tell people where to go and what to do” – and get down to the serious business of turning around the Town’s fortunes.

“At the moment it’s not going very well for them and I’ve joined a club that’s at a bit of a low,” said Still.

“If you put the Braintree game to one side, it’s clear we’ve got some talented players. I don’t know if they’ve over performed or under performed because that’s not been my job.

“It’s a great time for me to join because things are low. Any job is tough though, if I wanted it not tough, I’d have probably stayed at Dagenham.

“I’ve probably seen the worst of Luton, so I’ll say go and play, show me what you can do.

“If you have a bad game, I’m not going to say you’re a bad player. Whatever you’ve done here before, good or bad, I’ve not seen, so I’m only going on what people tell me.”

The new man has selection issues to content with too. Scott Rendell, Andre Gray and Jon Shaw did not train on Thursday, whilst defender Wayne Thomas will definitely miss Saturday’s game through suspension.

“I was really surprised how many people are injured to be honest but it is what it is," said Still.

“I try and say to players, 'how are you?'. They say a bit tired. I say, 'we’re playing Manchester United in the FA Cup on Saturday, would you be fit for that?' And they say, ‘oh yes I’d be fit for that’. So be fit for this one.

“Come on you’ve got to push yourself as well, don’t be injured, it’s simple isn’t it.”

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