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YOUTH: Kinder on Port Vale

21 September 2012

Reaction to the first defeat

Youth boss Eric Kinder spoke to us about the 1-0 home defeat against Port Vale.

He said: "We're very disappointed because it was the first defeat of the season.

"We didn't play particularly well and we never really started in the way we wanted to. When you're working with a group of U18 lads who have had such a good start to the season then you expect them to start getting ahead of themselves.

"I thought that was definitely the case last Saturday. I was listening to the way they were talking and they were saying things like they were going to go through the season unbeaten.

"What they will learn is that football is a great game for taking you from one extreme to the other without any warning at all. You can feel like you're unbeatable and then something smacks you on the nose and you're right back down on the ground again. 

"Looking at the game as a whole, we had over 70% of the possession but we couldn't turn it into goals. We made one mistake at the back when Dale [Minor] got under a cross and their lad headed it in. That gave them something to hold onto and that's exactly what they did.

"The positive for us is the way we did keep hold of the ball, even though we didn't use it to hurt them. That gives us something to work on. It's a little blip and hopefully we'll put it right against Blackpool on Saturday.

"I can't even criticise the work rate because they gave it everything they had. In fact, they probably tried too hard. 

"It was one of those days when it all seemed to go wrong. Port Vale got stuck in traffic, so they were late, but credit to them because they still wanted to kick off at midday. That turned a long trip into an awful trip for them, but we just didn't take advantage at all.

"Then the drugs testing people turned up and that disrupted it all a little bit more. There's nothing you can do about that and I completely agree with the way they do their work.

"Unbelievably we then had a mix-up about the colour of the socks with the referee and everything seemed to come together to make life difficult. 

"We didn't really show our best until the last 25 minutes but we then found that nothing was coming off for us. We had a change of formation to try to get to where we were outnumbering them in midfield, and that worked to a certain extent. 

"However, our final pass was poor and there weren't really that many clear cut chances. Like I say, we gave them something to hang on to and they ground out the win. The criticisms are that we didn't close down well enough and we didn't make it hard enough for them until it was too late. We didn't deserve to lose but we probably didn't deserve to win either.

"When you start a season like we have you do expect to win at home. You want to keep your run going for as long as possible and, in the cold light of day, it might not actually do us any harm. It could just be the reminder we all needed that this isn't going to be easy. We're not good enough to go a full season unbeaten and it's a big lesson in how this game can rock you back.

"The test for the group is to see how they react against Blackpool because they are a very good side. The corridors around the youth dressing room have been a little bit quieter this week because I don't think they expected to lose. With my development hat on we come out of the game feeling pleased, because we've seen some good things, but in terms of results it wasn't a good day for us."

United - Parker, Gwinnutt, Minor, Morse, Staunch, Dempsey, Berwick, Thomson (Dixon 71), Salmon, Clarey (Peel 77), Brough. Subs - Brass, Chisholm, McEvoy.

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