RORY Patterson will be available for FC United in Wednesday's home clash with Chadderton after serving his 35-day suspension.
But the former Rochdale player, a firm favourite with the support, faces a tough task in getting his place back after debutant Simon Band led the Rebels to a 3-0 win over Daisy Hill at Chorley's Victory Park on Saturday.
Patterson was sent off in a cup game at Colne in November for throwing a punch at an opponent, and boss Karl Marginson wants more discipline from the fiery Irishman.
Said Marginson: "He has had a nice long time to think about what he has been missing out on and hopefully will come back firing as he was at the start of the season, and show everyone what a good player he is."
Band, a former Congelton, Buxton, Atherton LR and Trafford player and the brother of Altrincham's Peter, impressed Marginson in a midweek friendly at Glossop last week and his work-rate and bustling style were key factors in FC's win over Westhoughton outfit Daisy Hill.
Josh Howard, skipper Dave Chadwick and sub Darren Lyons bagged the goals which extend FC's lead at the top of the Moore and Co Construction Solicitors League's second division to 14 points, with rivals Padiham seeing their game frozen off and Winsford losing 2-1 at Nelson.
But Marginson liked what he saw of Band, saying: "He has been a dream. He hasn't got all the quality in the world but gives you 150 per cent and he has shown in training and in the game against Glossop that he will put it in, which is something we have been looking for."
FC have signed 18-year-old midfielder Mike O'Neill and Warren Collier, but the latter will continue to play for his current side Monton Amateurs, and be in contention for the reserve and youth teams which will be set up next season.
February 13th, 2006