GARY Bowyer hopes to turn back into Mr Nice Guy at Macclesfield.

The City boss made his feelings very clear about the poor first-half display against Plymouth last week.

It was probably the first time that some members of the squad had seen their usually ultra-positive boss lose his rag.

Now Bowyer is waiting to see the reaction at the Moss Rose.

He said: “The players let themselves down and recognised that they’d fallen short. That’s a credit to them because they didn’t come out with any excuses.

“But that’s the first time we’ve said that this season which is a measure of their progress.

“I’ve not really had to do much of that. For them to have it properly for the first time isn’t bad considering it was the 17th (league) game.

“Now I’m really looking forward to seeing the character of them after we’ve been tested and challenged.”

Bowyer has sensed a response in training this week and the way the fringe players performed in a practice match against Bolton on Tuesday. But the proper proof will only come in the clash with the Silkmen.

Bowyer added: “You have a gauge and a feel for it by how they were on Saturday and Monday and how they were speaking to them individually.

“It’s one of those. We can do all the talking we want and build all the games up as managers always do, but the talking gets done on the pitch.

“I can say whatever people want to hear but ultimately it’s down to the players to go and produce. That will never change.

“We’ll support and encourage them as much as we can. But once the whistle blows it’s down to the players.”

Kelvin Mellor returned to training after being kept off as a precaution with soreness and will be available.

Jordan Gibson was involved in the behind-closed-doors game and Shay McCartan and Matty Palmer are both back involved.

Palmer joined back in yesterday and Bowyer said: "He deserves all the credit because his professionalism has been first class.

"He's looked after himself and done everything he can to get back as quick as possible.

"It's good to see because it will be like having new signings with some of them. They are coming back and it provides competition."

Clayton Donaldson sees the specialist tomorrow over his toe injury.