Date:Saturday March 10 2007
Having played for Notts County and Mansfield Town, Ian Baraclough knows more than a little about football in this area.
And, as he helps to prepare Scunthorpe United for their title showdown with Nottingham Forest, he hopes the weight of history will take its toll.
Now player/assistant manager with the Iron, Baraclough knows that victory today would help them take a significant step towards securing automatic promotion - and the League One title.
And, although he expects Forest to provide stern opposition, he hopes that they will buckle under the pressure on their shoulders.
'I know they are under immense pressure, but that has always been the case,' said Baraclough.
'When they were in what is now the Championship they were under pressure to get into the Premiership and the supporters expect them to be in the top division.
'They have had a big turnover in players since they were relegated and the players they have brought in may not be used to that level of expectancy. I hope that puts pressure on them and I think it does. They are expected to go out and roll over whoever they are playing.'
Baraclough himself has returned from an ankle injury, but may have to be content with a place on the bench, as Scunthorpe look to extend their 14-match unbeaten run.
'It's been hard being out of the team while they have been on such a good run,' he said.
'The fact that the team have done so well while I've been injured makes it more frustrating, of course it does.
'You always want to be playing, even though seeing the lads win is fantastic. But our league position is great and it is where we want to be.
'You don't make wholesale changes to a team that has won seven games on the trot.
'The lads in the team have done fantastically well, but we knew they would because we always wanted to have a squad where people could come in and do the same job.
'The mood at the club couldn't be any better at the moment.
'And there is nothing better than a home game against one of your rivals, when you know there is going to be a full house. These are the sort of games you play the games for. They are why you are involved in football.'
Nottingham Evening Post
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