Former Carlisle United midfielder Chris Lumsdon has issued a damming verdict on the Cumbrians latest defeat in his column in the News an Star.
Lumsdon, who won the National League and League Two titles during his five years with the Cumbrians, said that everyone at the club should be having a good hard look at themselves after Exeter City ran out comfortable 3-1 winners at Brunton Park on Saturday.
Under-fire manager Steven Pressley is taking much of the blame for Carlisle’s poor start, but Lumsdon felt the players should now stand up and be counted and show the attitude needed to start winning some football matches. He said: ‘With the players and the experience Carlisle have got, I don’t care whether the budget has been reduced or not – they should be around 10th, not down in 19th.’
‘Steven Pressley said he didn’t get nearly enough out of his players on Saturday. He put a team out that should have been able to compete with Exeter, yet if it weren’t for Collin, the visitors would have had five or six.’
‘After that, a player should walk into training with his bottom lip on the ground. His body language should reflect how angry he is.’
He also called on the under-performing squad to ‘show some fight’ and looked to the example of Cheltenham and Macclesfield who’ve both picked up early season results despite having limited resources.
Lumsdon also touched on broader issues of how the club is currently run, with a lack of clear leadership breeding a worrying apathy and acceptance of their fate by the club’s famously loyal supporters, going on to describe the atmosphere on Saturday as ‘depressing.’
Looking ahead to the game at the weekend, Lumsdon stressed Carlisle have to get a result when they visit currently managerless Stevenage and called upon Pressley and his players to treat the match as a cup final if they are not to be drawn into a season when their league status comes under serious threat.
Lumsdon is right to call out the players, but unfortunately, the buck stops with Pressley.
The under-pressure boss has started to name and shame individual players publicly, and this is never a good sign, his days look numbered to us here at The Real Efl.
However, Lumsdon also hinted there are wider issues within the club, and it may be that until the football club sorts itself out, the next manager might also be on a hiding to nothing.
The club is currently drifting, and unless it finds some leadership from somewhere, it could sleepwalk into the National League this season.