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INTERVIEW: We had enough chances

13 October 2015

Danny Grainger on the Morecambe game

Team captain Danny Grainger spoke to us about the disappointment of the Morecambe result shortly after full time on Saturday.

"I thought we came out of the blocks quite quickly," he said. "We stamped our authority on the game and started well, but once we got the goal we seemed to step off it for some reason.

"I'm not really sure why that happened, but it's disappointing. I think all three goals we conceded were all down to us. They weren't made to work hard for them."

"We had enough chances," he told us. "Derek [Asamoah] had a one-on-one in the first half and the keeper made a good save from one of his shots. Jason [Kennedy] hit the bar a couple of times and my free kick went just wide. We had plenty of chances to win the game, we just couldn't get the goal at the right time and they got their goals when they needed to.

"We could tell on the pitch that we weren't pushing on as much as we should be. Sometimes it's hard to get going again and get back up the pitch, but you never know the reason why it gets that way."

"You look at the position we are in the league but I don't think we've really got going yet," he said. "We've played in fits and starts so there are positives as well as negatives. I don't think we've played a full game how we would want to yet. I honestly don't think we've started well, played well in the middle and then finished a game well. We have to start doing that and I think it'll come.

"Having said that, we've dug in when we needed to and the team spirit in the dressing room is top notch. Even today, we've gone in there and we're standing together and looking for the positives, because that's what we're about this year."

"I don't think a performance like this was a case of us being over confident because we've got plenty of lads who have been around the block," he insisted. "We put two great performances in away from home but we knew this was a big game for us. A win would have seen us into the play-offs, if not higher.

"We're looking forward to a good week on the training ground and next weekend's game already. Like I say, we're four points off the top with 12 games played and I think we all would have taken that at the start of the season."

"We need to get a positive result next week for the home fans," he said. "The crowd was over 5,000 today, which is tremendous, and we want to make sure they stay behind us. If we can keep them behind us I'm sure we'll do well this year, and it's good to see more of them coming to games." 

On the levels of communication on the pitch, he said: "Some people need a rocket up their backside and some people need an arm round them. The gaffer does it off the pitch and I've got to try and do it when we're on the pitch. 

"I'm one that needs a rocket myself and we've got plenty of players who are willing to give me it. Gary Dicker, Michael Raynes and Mark Gillespie will all do it, and we've got a vocal dressing room with everyone driving each other on."

On his first goal of the season, he said: "It's nice to get the goal but I would have taken the three points all day long. As soon as I hit it I knew it was bending round and going in. I was delighted with it, it's my first this season, and I think it's my first from open play. I'd have been much happier to be going home with three points rather than a goal.

"My family are always at the games supporting me so it was nice to score right in front of them. I think that's actually only my second ever goal with my right foot. I was giving Courtney [Meppen-Walter] a bit of grief as well during my celebration because he doesn't think I've got a right foot. I was just pointing out that mine is better than his!"

"We've got a really good team spirit and I've got no doubt that we'll bounce back next weekend after a good week of training," he told us. "The manager will have us working hard and he'll make sure we're ready for next week.

"We'll have a good chat before training on Tuesday, some lads will have a chat about the game, but others prefer to put it to the back of their mind and move on. It's gone now, we can't affect what has happened on the pitch today, and we just have to make sure come this time next week we're sitting here with three points." 

Speaking about the error which led to the equaliser, he said: "Macaulay [Gillesphey] had a tough game, but he'll learn from it. Every game will add to his experience. He's come here and he's been tremendous. He's very vocal for a young lad and he's good to have in the dressing room. 

"He'll bounce back from it and even after the first goal I don't think he hid away. He was standing up and doing the good things in his game. He's got a dressing room around him now that will pull him through because we've all been there and he's no different to any of us. I'm not sure what's happening with his loan spell but we're all hoping him and Alex [Gilliead] can stay with us."

"I've been happy with my own form," he commented. "I think the way we're playing suits me. The manager has asked me to play a few different roles and I'm more than happy to do whatever he thinks will benefit the team.

"I'm getting a few assists and hopefully now I'll start to chip in with a few more goals. It's taken me a couple of weeks to get used to playing out on the left but I'm getting more confident with every game I play. I'm getting the ball with my back to play sometimes, which is different for me, but it's something I'm confident in doing."

"We don't want to lose three home games in a row but before Newport I think we were ten or 11 unbeaten at Brunton Park," he said. "It's disappointing that we've followed that with back to back defeats in games where teams didn't have to work very hard. You could maybe accept it if someone came here and passed us off the park, or cut us open, but all the goals we've conceded have been down to us rather than great work by them.

"We know Exeter is a big game, but every game is big when you're at this end of the table because you want to make sure you stay in the pack. I'm more than confident in what we've got in the dressing room that we'll get a result."

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