United looking for a Diamond result

Last updated : 25 December 2002 By Luke Thornhill
Damaged ankle
A late tackle from Carlisle United player Mark Summerbell, which saw him receive his marching orders, has left him extremely doubtful with an ankle injury.

The tackle removed tissue from around his ankle, and it remains sore and weak.

Lee Featherstone can return to the side, and looks set to slot straight back into a left midfield role with Scott Brough likley to be moved elsewhere.

Mark Jackson will keep his place in the starting XI in place of the injured Jamie McCombe.

United have no other doubts, and Martin Carruthers is high on confidence after scoring twice in successive games - including the goal which set up the third round tie with Leeds United.

Iron manager Brian Laws believes that today's game has more importance for the club than the glamour tie.

"We have had a day or two to reflect on the prospect of facing Leeds but certainly we have a more important tie against Rushden," he said.

"The players have been responding extremely well over the last few days and we have a massive task on our hands playing four games in eight days.

"It is good to see Martin Carruthers back amongst the goals, I don't know about the goal at Hartlepool but when you are a striker they all count whether they are a great strike or go in off your backside.

"A striker likes to see his name on the scoresheet, and Martin will be hoping to make it three in three."

Duane Derby will return to the side for the visitors, they will also be without their first choice goalkeeper Adam Sollitt who has a sprained wrist.

If United manage to earn all three points today then it will be the first time that we have beaten the Diamonds.

Our first meeting with them saw us knocked out of the FA Cup, while our three league games have seen two draws and a defeat.