Manager Keith Curle gave us his reaction to the away draw at Yeovil on Good Friday.
“We’ve come to a team full of confidence and kept a clean sheet, so we have some real positives to take from it, but overall there’s a feeling of frustration,” he said. “We didn’t put enough quality balls into their box and the decision making in the final third was lacking at times.
“There were a number of good opportunities with balls in wide areas but we didn’t deliver. Sometimes we took the decision to run at people when it would have been better to try to hit areas inside their penalty area.
“On those occasions when we did get good balls into the box the referee blew up for some reason. That in itself causes another level of frustration. All in all we didn’t keep hold of the ball well enough but, as I say, it was a clean sheet and a solid point away from home.”
“Our keeper hasn’t had to make a save for 94 minutes so we’re disappointed that we didn’t work their keeper enough,” he admitted. “I thought we started very well but we didn’t carry that on. That’s about knowing when it’s the right time to play and when it isn’t.
“There needs to be bravery about the decision making and we keep reminding the lads that they won’t get told off if they make a mistake. That’s part and parcel of the game so we’ll keep working on making sure we know when to play football and when to be a bit more direct.
“It’s all about foundations and building blocks and there was a good understanding of what we needed to do as a defensive unit. We just needed a bit more going forward. I thought Charlie [Wyke] was excellent with his work rate but he just needed to be given a good chance to finish something off.”
“It’s there within the group because there was one passage of play in the first half where we kept the ball in the corner before working it through,” he commented. “That move ended with a shot from Hallam Hope and if it had gone in I think it would have been our goal of the season.
“We’re hard to beat at the moment but we need to be scoring goals. The players will be off on Saturday, so they can rest and recuperate, and they’ll be put through a series of finishing sessions on Sunday. We’ll work on that from set plays and from open play because we need to get back to getting used to shooting on sight of goal.
“You don’t need to look at it, you just need to bang it. Sometimes it really is as simple as that. The goals don’t move so it’s about having the confidence on occasions to just go for it.”
On the use of the long throw, he said: “I told the lads at half time that there was a time when it was right to use it, and that’s predominantly when we were around their 18-yard box area.
“We do work on set plays and on getting the first contact and I thought we looked to get on the ball in the first 15 or 20 minutes. We’ve got goals in the team and if we keep creating these chances they will come.”
On the return of Brandon Comley, and the additions of Louis Pedro, Martin Smith and Jack Stacey, he said: “We know all about Brandon. He’s chomping at the bit but it was predominantly a training session on shape on Thursday, and he’s just come back from three or four weeks out. He has the weekend now and I know he’ll be competing and showing us that he’s ready.
“Louis is available as far as I’m concerned. He played a full 90 minutes last Tuesday and he looked ready to go. He has good ball mastery and he can open doors. The coach had left Carlisle and we were down near Manchester by the time we got word that international clearance had come through on Thursday.
“The team had already been picked and the preparations finalised so we felt the best thing we could do was leave him to do some work in Carlisle so that he’s ready to go for Monday.
“Jack has directness and a willingness to work in behind the back four. He’s very well thought of at Reading and he’s brought a bit of freshness in the wide areas for us. The one thing he didn’t get today was a lot of supply of the ball in the right areas so that he could fully showcase his talents.
“Martin is another who likes to support the forward play and he can use the football. He gets involved and you can see he wants to get on the ball. All of these lads have come in and settled very well and there’s more to come from all of them.”
And on movement the other way, he said: “We had a few phone calls from National League teams who were trying to find out about the availability of a few players, but none of that went any further.
“We’re comfortable with that because I look at our squad now and we have good options. We have very good players who have to be left out at the moment because of the recruitment work we’ve done.
“There’s a high level of competition and I’m a big believer in using people straight away if I think I’ve seen something in someone which will add things to the mix. I’m like a kid at Christmas because I want to get them out and play with them straight away, rather than have to wait until after dinner.”