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MANAGER: Two competitive sides

24 February 2016

Keith Curle with reaction to the Wimbledon game

United manager Keith Curle gave us his reaction to the away defeat at Wimbledon on Tuesday night.

“Performance wise I am very happy,” he said. “If you’re going to get beat then that’s the way for it to happen to this club. We’ve emptied the tank and we’ve given everything and we’ve pushed a good team to the limits.

“The players bought into our game plan and played exceptionally well on the night. We created enough chances to more than win the game in what I would call difficult circumstances.”

“I don’t think we got a very good performance from the referee tonight but that’s my opinion,” he told us. “Mark [Gillespie] made his decision to come out for the ball and it was disappointing that he didn’t get the bounce of the ball. 

“I’m not sure he was the last man because I think the player would have had to take a touch and go round him. Mark Ellis was back and goal side and he would have tried to get a block on the shot if that had happened. 

“There were so many things which happened through the game where you think it’s not going to be your day. We hit the post twice and the big decisions just didn’t go our way. We stuck to the way we wanted to approach it and that was to go at them. 

“The lads knew that every time we got the opportunity to play forward it was what we were going to do. I thought we caused them problems and we gave their back four an uneasy time. We definitely created enough chances to win the game. The players will learn because if you get chances like those we had away from home you have to take them.

“If we'd come away with the points I don't think anybody could have said it was a smash and grab or that we nicked it. I think it would have been justified if we'd got all three points. I don't think anyone could have had any complaints. The only disappointment was that we didn’t make their keeper work enough.

“We had a plan A and a plan B. Plan B was more of plan A, so there a lot of positives to take out of the game.”

On the chance of a red card appeal for Mark Gillespie, he said: “We'll need to review it then make a decision based on that. There won't be a knee jerk reaction. If we think it's a genuine sending off we'll hold our hands up. 

“I believe it's a one game ban for denying a goal scoring opportunity so we'll have to see how the referee writes it up. I think the referee is upset because I wasn't happy with his performance so I'll go in and see him after the game. Everyone has come off slightly deflated because we know we've put in a good shift and a very credible performance tonight.”

And on the other work to be done in the emergency transfer window, he said: “We're still working on signings. You look at the performance levels of these players today and you can see why we need to bring in the right quality to fit in with that hard working and professional performance. 

“Players are listening and taking on board the game plan and sticking to that game plan. The neutrals who came and watched the game will have enjoyed seeing two competitive sides.”

“We didn’t have David Atkinson with us this evening because he is being nursed through,” he explained. “He is one who needed to have a rest. We’ll know more about his availability for the weekend when we have a look at him on Thursday.

“Antony Sweeney has had his scan and we think from the initial results he could be missing for a period of time, but we need to get that confirmed by our medical people.”

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