PETER JACKSON is backing Phil Senior to respond with a clean sheet when Town face one of their most physical battles of the season against Lincoln at the McAlpine on Saturday.
The 21-year-old keeper's fortunes have fluctuated in the last three matches, with mistakes against Darlington and Bristol Rovers being focused upon either side of a fantastic display and clean sheet in the win at Torquay.
While Jackson continues to look for goalkeeping cover with Ian Gray on the injured list, the manager will have no hesitation in making Senior's the first name on the teamsheet against Keith Alexander's in-form side.
"Lincoln are a big, strong and physical side who work extremely hard and we are going to have to match them in every department," said Jackson today.
"It's particularly important we are ready to do battle at set-pieces and to scrap for every 50-50 that's going, because they've got six or seven players over 6ft in their team and will be coming here to have a real go after their 4-1 win at York.
"We have to be ready to stand up and be counted and I know the lads at the back will be setting their sights on a clean sheet.
"No-one is more disappointed than Phil Senior about the goal he conceded on Tuesday night, or about the mistake he made for Darlington's second goal the other week, but all keepers make mistakes from time to time - just look at David James for England last night!
"As far as I'm concerned, Phil has come into the team to replace a man I rate very highly and he's done marvellously well for us and helped us put together a very good run.
"He has made some tremendous saves, earned us more points than he has cost us and, after the error he made at Bristol, I know he will be determined to respond with a typical Phil Senior performance against Lincoln - solid and reliable."
Jackson had Nat Brown and Andy Booth back in training today after treatment to back injuries, while Nathan Clarke and Efe Sodje have shaken off knee problems.
The only doubt for Saturday appears to be midfielder Lee Fowler, who was struggling with a knock sustained in training before the 1-1 draw Bristol Rovers and was forced off at half time. Fowler was having further treatment today and missed the Storthes Hall squad session.
"Apart from Ian Gray still being out, news on the injury front is pretty good at the moment and we are hoping to have Ian Hughes back in training with us on Monday after his knee operation," added Jackson.
"We will have to wait and see on Lee Fowler, but after picking up four points in two tough away games, he won't want to miss what is a real six-pointer for us against Lincoln in front of our own fans, who have a massive role to play.
"They were superb when things didn't go our way against Darlington and we need them right behind us again this Saturday."
Town, of course, lost 3-1 at Sincil Bank in October after taking the lead through Booth.
Tickets for the trip to Carlisle on Saturday week remain on sale at the McAlpine. Town have 1,800 priced £14 for adults and £5 concessions.