Anthony O'Connor & Peter Hartley hailed by Plymouth Argyle boss

Peter Hartley and Anthony O'Connor
Peter Hartley (left) and Anthony O'Connor have made 59 appearances for Argyle between them this season

Plymouth Argyle manager John Sheridan says the return of Peter Hartley and Anthony O'Connor is a big reason his side have ended their poor run of form.

The defenders have started Argyle's last two matches, coinciding with on Saturday and on Tuesday.

"You can see the difference in the team, they've got a bit of aggression and do the ugly things well," Sheridan told BBC Radio Devon.

"It rubs off on the other players."

Before last week the Pilgrims had not won a league game since 20 December.

But the last time Argyle lost a match which both Hartley and O'Connor started was on 6 December - a 3-0 by League One Sheffield United in the FA Cup.

The last defeat the duo suffered in League Two was at Mansfield on 22 November.

Hartley, who joined Argyle at the start of the season, has returned after missing much of December and January with a hip injury.

O'Connor after his loan from Blackburn Rovers ended in the middle of January.

"Peter and Anthony are physical in the way they play and the way they go about things and they give us more balance," added Sheridan.

"They know what their jobs are and it makes us a stronger team and a better outfit."