Manager Keith Curle gave us his reaction to the Coventry game shortly after full time on Tuesday night.
“We were very competitive in the first half and we caused them problems with our shape,” he said. “Going into half time there was nothing in the game. In the first half Shamal [George] had to make one save but the best chance fell to Jamie Devitt in the box. When Jamie starts scoring goals I think he’ll go on a run and get us a few.
Tom Parkes stepped in and had a shot which hit the woodwork in the second half and he also had a free header in the box, which caught him by surprise. If that shot had gone in we’re looking at a different story and it would have been a nervous 15 minutes for them.
“We had goal mouth chances but we didn’t threaten enough in the second half. We didn’t have enough forward impetus so there are lessons to be learned. What we needed to do was play balls in behind and turn them so we could get territorial advantage. The first goal was disappointing in a couple of ways, but it’s work in progress.”
“We’re going to work hard to turn it round, it’s as simple as that,” he said. “There were positives to take from it but we also saw naivety from players in the first few minutes of the second half when, just two or three passes after a throw-in, the ball ended up in the back of our net.
“The only way to turn this is around is through the attitude and application to work. It isn’t a punishment, we need to turn it around and we’re prepared to work to do that. It’s a challenge we’ll all face head on.
“We’ve got a good group who are prepared to work - their application isn’t a problem. At the moment we aren’t getting things our way, but the easy thing to do would be to have a day off and sulk about it. We’ll be in at 9am on Wednesday morning and we’ll turn it around.”
Speaking about the second goal, which gave United plenty to do in the closing stages, he said: “Danny Grainger has held his hand up. We’re looking for good balls into the box from Danny but he didn’t get it into the area where it’s required and we were caught on the break.
“Apart from that I didn’t think there was a lot in the game. We were two evenly matched teams and we started the game more adventurous and caused them a few more problems. Jamie Devitt’s chance was the best one of the first half, he hit the target and made the goalkeeper work.
“He’s another player who needs that first goal to get off and running. When the players get a bit of confidence and get a run of goals that will bring the belief back and we will be a goal threat.”
“I’ve got a group of players in there who are hurting,” he commented. “They’re disappointed but they know there’s light at the end of the tunnel, because they’re prepared to face challenges. Like I say, we’ll work hard because we know we have the attributes and skill sets to get the results we want to see.
“We don’t have any right to be a top six team and we know that anything we get, we earn. What I would say to everyone is that they need to keep the belief because sometimes you need to iron out one or two issues, errors or mistakes, and you’ve got to grow stronger with it.
“I think we played Exeter after seven games last season and we beat them when they were at the bottom of the league. Everyone was shouting for the manager’s head and the only way you can stop that is to show that you’re prepared to work hard and keep your belief and unity.
“I know that football supporters get disappointed and what I would say is that if you’re coming to the stadium just to have a rant, direct it at me. I can take everything that everybody has got. All I would ask is that the fans encourage the players, encourage their team and help us to get the best out of them. I know what our supporters are like and I know they will back the players. If there are any frustrations vent them at me.”
And on the Barnet game at the weekend, he told us: “There will be nerves on Saturday because we don’t like losing games. I know there will be frustration within the crowd if we aren’t two or three up inside the first 20 minutes.
“Barnet will come and try to keep the crowd to turn on us to try and make it a difficult afternoon. We’ve got to be focused and disciplined and see it as a challenge, face the challenge and deal with it.”
And his final word was for the supporters who had been caught up in the accident, severely delaying their arrival at the ground.
“We were really disappointed to hear what had happened,” he said. “That’s why the players went over to show their appreciation. Whatever gets thrown at them they get there somehow.
“The fans we have support Carlisle United with a real passion and we understand there will be elements of anger, frustration and disappointment at times. That’s why we want to give them the results they deserve.”
Click HERE to watch an interview with Keith Curle on iFollow United now.