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MANAGER: A goal would have helped us to continue the momentum

Manager Keith Curle on the Luton game

22 November 2017

Manager Keith Curle gave us his reaction to the Tuesday night away game at Kenilworth Road shortly after the full-time whistle had blown.

Speaking first about the result, he said: “I’m disappointed for the lads because they competed and, in spells, produced some of the stuff we’re looking to play on a consistent basis. I thought there were periods where we were on top, but we needed a goal to make it count.

“We started the game very well, but they got the goal and that’s what they are particularly good at. They’re a team full of attacking threat and they are playing with confidence. They had four shots and scored two in that first half, we had three and didn’t hit the back of the net.

“You’ve got to give the lad credit because it was a good finish. Sometimes that’s the quality you need, and you get what you pay for.

“They have financial clout and they’ve invested well in strikers who find the net and they’ve got confidence in abundance from that. Like I say, we caused them problems, but we didn’t get the goals we needed to really put our stamp on the game.

“We were putting the ball into good areas, but the final bit of quality wasn’t there. When we needed to be bringing others into play to get us further up the pitch we lost the momentum, on occasions, and that’s when the game became stretched.”

“Their second goal was annoying,” he commented. “When it was still at one-nil you were thinking we would still get something out of the game, but it deflated us when that one went in.

“We needed a goal in response to that if we were going to go on and get something. The important thing now is that we build on the periods of the game which saw us produce the type of football we’re trying to play. The third goal killed us because that’s when we were on the front-foot and playing some of our best stuff.

“We won’t dismantle our thought process, so what we do now is start work again on Thursday and make sure we’re ready to go again, in the right frame of mind, for Morecambe at the weekend.

“I haven’t had a go at anybody because we build on the positives we’ve seen over recent weeks. Some of our decision making still needs to be better so we do have plenty to work on as well.”

With three changes made to the starting line-up on the night he explained that team selections are always made based on who he feels will be best suited to the job at hand.

“I pick teams I think will cause the opposition problems,” he told us. “Within that in this game there were some good performances from people who were given the opportunity to play.

“The nature and understanding within the squad we have is that they know I’ll pick the team I think is best suited to the opposition we face. There will be talking points from players we select and from formation changes but, in my opinion, what I did was needed and merited for this game.

“Our team selection was tactical because we wanted to nullify the game, but I wanted to play the two quick, mobile lads up top. From watching their games, I knew they had better dynamics than us in midfield and a forward-thinking mentality, which meant there were going to run off us.

“If we’d played four at the back with their three up top, we were going to get heavily outnumbered in that area. We wanted that extra bit of assurance with an extra defender.

“Hindsight is always a good thing and I know there’ll be questions to be asked about every team selection, every week. We have a small squad and we’re coming into a bank of games where we’re going to need everybody. They’re all on board with that whether they’re starting, on the bench or not involved.

“We’ve got Tom Parkes there who is bitterly disappointed that he had to come off at half time to enable us to change things tactically. He understands it, and he knows that everything we do is for a reason.”

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