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Cheltenham v Shrewsbury: Steve Cotterill won’t get carried away after good start

Ten games in and Shrewsbury Town sit in the top 10 at this stage of the season for only the third time in the last seven years.

Ryan Bowman of Shrewsbury Town celebrates with his team mates after scoring a goal to make it 2-1.
Ryan Bowman of Shrewsbury Town celebrates with his team mates after scoring a goal to make it 2-1.

But despite that good start Steve Cotterill insisted he nor his players will be getting carried away – as he gets set to take his charges to his old club Cheltenham Town on Saturday.

Salop have won four of their first 10 games, with the latest coming last week courtesy of Ryan Bowman’s second-half winner against Burton Albion.

With almost a quarter of the season already played, the Salop boss is happy with what he has seen so far.

Asked how he would sum up the opening to the season, he said: “Not bad.

“Yeah, not bad really, that is what I don’t. I don’t see anything to get carried away about, I won’t be one of those anyway.

“We have done OK so far and I think that is credit to the players really, because, and I said this last year, but it is like they are a new group. There are 40 to 50 per cent of them that are new again, so for them to gel is a credit to the new boys, coming in and finding their feet and the group accepting them.

“They get on great, wherever they are they are together, they are not separated.

“We don’t have a pocket here and a pocket there, they are all together, they intermingle brilliantly, and they are a good group.”

Cotterill is also two months shy of two years in the hotseat at Salop – having taken over from Sam Ricketts in November 2020.

And as well as being pleased with his side’s start to this campaign, he believes as a club Shrewsbury are ‘evolving nicely’.

He explained: “I think every job is a long-term plan, but not everyone gets the opportunity of being a long-term plan.

“You have to have a short-term plan with an idea of being here long enough for it to get to an end of a plan.

“Some things along the way in the last few years I have done, I’ve not wanted to do them but I have had do.

“And I think this season along the way there is some things I have had to do and not wanted to do.

“But I just think the club is evolving nicely, that is how I would put it.”

On Saturday the Salop boss returns to his hometown club, where he enjoyed five years of success as manager between 1997 and 2002.

He took the Robins from the Southern Football League Premier Division to what is now League One during his time at the club.

And although he is looking forward to returning again to Whaddon Road, where he received a warm reception last season, Cotterill won’t have room for sentiment when kick-off arrives.

“It is always a special place, where you’ve been born.” added Cotterill.

“It is nice to go back but I want to win, and they will know, I was like that when I was there.

“The club is very dear to my heart. It was a great reception last time and I am sure it probably will be again.”

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