Sheffield Steelers will be short-benched at Braehead Clan

Paul Thompson

Paul Thompson

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Sheffield Steelers must try and find a new spark for their season-ending campaign without two forwards.

Colton Fretter and Yared Hagos are both unlikely to be fit enough to play Saturday night at Braehead Clan or on Sunday, at home to Cardiff Devils.

Coach Paul Thompson will be assessing two or three other players including centre Andreas Valdix, who returned to action last Sunday but was far from fit.

Despite the challenges, Thompson is looking forward to playing in Scotland, although his team lost to them on thie last meeting, at iceSheffield, in January.

“There is no lingering ill-feeling since Sunday’s cup final defeat, the leaders in the room have been positive just as they have all year” said Thompson.

“We are not a doom and gloom team.

“We just want to get back to winning ways. And we have been doing everything we can this week to make that happen.

“We are better than Sunday’s game suggested. But we have to put our foot down on the gas now.”

Thompson admired the way Braehead have won their Gardiner Conference, with 21 wins from 29 games.

“They may have lost their mojo last weekend. But they are a good team, they have a highly skilled first line that tops the league in scoring and when they have everybody available they have good depth.”

The coach says he has been pleased with the form of goaltender Ervins Mustukovs.

“If it wasn’t for him on Sunday, it would have been a lot worse, he is the best in the League” he said.

n Cardiff Devils play at home to Dundee Stars on Saturday before heading off to Sheffield Arena.