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‘I can’t say anymore’ – mystery surrounds Carlisle striker’s absence

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Pompey’s final League One game is just under 24 hours away. John Mousinho’s side have already secured their place in next year’s Championship but will look to end the season triumphantly at Lincoln following last week’s defeat to Wigan.

Work is already under way as the Blues plan for their second-tier return. Their League One rivals don’t have that luxury, though, with both Derby County and Bolton still battling to secure the second automatic promotion spot.

Mystery remains over Carlisle star’s absence

Carlisle United boss Paul Simpson has confirmed Joshua Kayode will again be unavailable for the club’s final game of the season against Derby – but is still unable to reveal why.

The Brunton Park side are fated to play in League Two next season after suffering 29 losses in their 45 matches to date this season, winning just seven. They head to Pride Park on Saturday with the Rams needing just a draw to see off Bolton’s promotion challenge.

The Cumbrians, however, will be without on-loan Rotherham forward Kayode for a second week in a row.

Last weekend, Simpson reportedly received a call before Carlisle’s game against Wycombe Wanderers saying the 23-year-old would be unavailable. And ahead of the trip to Derby, Simpson wasn’t able to provide an explanation why the Republic of Ireland under-21 international remains absent.

He told newsandstar.co.uk: ‘All I can say again, and I can’t say anymore, is he’s not available – I’m really sorry but I can’t give any more information about it. He’s still in (the club) today. He’s not available.

‘I get it – and let me tell you it’s not my decision to not give any information. There’s a confidentiality issue and I’ve been told that that’s all I can say. You know me – and I get criticised for speaking openly and speaking too openly – but in this situation I really do have to just leave it at that.’

The forward has made just four appearances this season having been hampered by shoulder and calf injuries. Simpson confessed his frustrations over the situation.

‘The whole season’s been frustrating for JJ firstly, and us secondly, because I think we’re all fully aware of what JJ could have brought to the group and we’ve not had him available. and we’ve virtually had nothing from him.”

‘Gung-ho’ – Bolton ready for Peterborough

Bolton are ready to react if Derby County give them a hope of securing automatic promotion on the final day of the season.

The Rams’ place in the Championship, alongside Pompey, will be sealed if they avoid defeat to relegated Carlisle.

But Wanderers boss Ian Evatt said his players will be ready for all eventualities and are prepared to take risks as they take on fourth-placed Peterborough on Saturday.

He said: ‘(Peterborough) is a team that creates a hatful of chances, so provided we can take them, we won’t have a problem.

‘Obviously, we will get updates in the game and if we need to go a little more gung-ho because the goals need to come then that is something we can change in-game, but the approach is the same.

‘We will play our way and try to win the game. The most important thing is that we perform against one of our direct competitors.’

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