With United having battled back from the setback of conceding an early penalty on Saturday, boss Steven Pressley spoke about the need for the players to use the second 45-minute display as a springboard, starting with the home game against Macclesfield on Saturday.
“I hope that does turn out to be the case,” he said. “There are no guarantees, but we all know that we have to follow this up.
“We haven’t managed to do that this season. Certainly we’ve given ourselves a little bit of confidence from the performance and we’ve now got a full week, because the one thing we haven’t had is the opportunity to really get on the training ground over the last couple of weeks and work with the players. A free week gives us that opportunity.
“As we’ve seen, we’ve looked at different players and different formations in recent weeks and it does give us food for thought. We know we have to look at certain aspects.
“We were leaking a lot of goals and that brought a change of system. Now we’re not scoring as many, so we’ve made a change to the system again and we look far more potent. We’re always trying to find the solution, that’s part of the journey.
“I have a definite way I’d like us to play but sometimes the journey to that point isn’t smooth. In fact generally it isn’t.
“We’ll work hard again this week. They’ll be in Monday, for many of them that will be for recovery, then we’ll start building on certain aspects from Tuesday onwards as we look towards the game at the weekend.”
Speaking again about a first strike for the club for Jack Iredale, he commented: “He’s been threatening to do that. The other thing is that it’s difficult again when you’re going through a period to sometimes talk about green shoots.
“I think if you look at some of the improvement ... I thought Mellish was outstanding. Iredale, the improvements in that kid. We’ve got some real younger players that are really developing at this moment. I take encouragement from that.”
A booking for Byron Webster in the second half at Brisbane Road means that he misses out on the Macclesfield home game as he serves a one-match suspension.
“Yes, that takes him to five, but it’s just something we have to deal with,” he said. “We were missing Stefan Scougall on Saturday, he wasn’t quite right. He trained on Friday and was still feeling the effects of it, that was another blow.
“But I thought Mo Sagaf was quite amazing. What a performance that kid gave, I was really proud of him. Not only out of possession but in possession, he showed great, great composure and I’m really proud of him.”
And the United boss revealed that he’d used England’s performance against New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup semi-final on Saturday morning as an example of what teamwork can bring.
“I actually made reference to the England rugby team when I spoke to the players before the game,” he said. “Obviously I’m a Scotsman, and by no means do I have much knowledge about rugby, but you could see in that England performance that they were together and the intensity of their work was always going to give them a chance to go on and win the game, which they did.
“They showed a relentless approach and a desire to win, and those key aspects apply in any sport. If you give that as a minimum you give yourselves every chance. Today we showed that kind of thing in the first half, but we didn’t do it well enough. In the second half we were much more cohesive and we looked a far better side.
“All we can do is take each game as it comes to us. We’re on a journey and we have a plan in place, but I’m well aware that in the short-term we need to win to give us time to implement those plans.
“At the moment the focus is on continuous improvement with individuals and, from that, we’ll see the team improving along with it.”
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