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MANAGER: Games are decided by inches and yards

Steven Pressley on getting back to what we're good at

10 September 2019

Manager Steven Pressley spoke more about the need for the intensity levels to be high during the 90 minutes to allow the way the team wants to play in games to have its maximum impact.

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“As a club, as a staff, we pride ourselves on certain aspects, and one of those aspects is intense football,” he said. “That intensity has to be there both in and out of possession.

“It’s something all my sides are built on, there’s a pride about that, and that’s why I don’t like it if I feel that a team has worked harder than us. It’s not something I like being associated with.”

“It was those aspects of the game which disappointed on Saturday, because they weren’t there,” he continued. “We have to address that and we have to be better. There’s no doubt in my opinion we missed the energy of Scougall, but when he’s out of the team we need others to step up.

“There were a couple of shining lights – Adam Collin had a terrific game, but that’s sad to see when it’s our home game. And Mo Sagaf, who I thought came in and performed very well.

“To be fair to him, I thought he was one of the shining lights. I thought he did well, although he did tire and look very fatigued in the last 20 minutes. I thought he was at the heart of most of our good stuff, so I was pleased with his performance. I think there is still a lot more to come from him, because physically he still isn’t at our levels.

“What we saw from Harry [McKirdy] was good when he came on. He’s the type of player that once the game opens up and you can get him into forward positions, then he’s a very exciting player. I thought he made an impact and always tried to make things happen, so that was a pleasing aspect.”

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With the lads looking to bounce back this weekend, he told us: “We had a theme we talked about all week last week. It was in my presentation to the players – games will be decided by the inches and the yards, and how much we want to go those extra yards and inches.

“On Saturday we didn’t, and when you step off a good side, like we did, you’ll be punished. When I talk about intense football, it’s both sides of the game. In and out of possession we’ve got to be intense.

“We pass aggressively and, if we lose it, we press immediately. Those aspects weren’t there against Exeter and that’s why I was disappointed.

“Having said all of that, we have to remember that we’ve seen some good things recently. We won at Scunthorpe last weekend, and we had a good performance here at home the weekend before.

“There’s always boos when you lose at home, that’s normal. Our fans come here to be entertained and they look for their team to win. We have to answer those critics by performances and results.

“I think we all have to understand that we’re a very new team and some of our performances have been terrific – let’s not get away from that. That’s why this week we work again, we refocus, and we work hard on trying to improve. And we’ll continue to do that.

“It’s a week where I think a big part of the week will be concentrating on our own performance and how we can improve. Stevenage, we’ll analyse them, but based on the weekend it’s important we get back to doing what we’re good at.

“These fans of ours want us to do well, I know that. We get them on our side by doing the things we’re good at. That’s the bottom line. We won’t panic but we will push to get better. We need to get back to passing the ball sharper, pressing sharper, playing with more intensity, that’s it, nothing else. We need to get back to doing the good things and then we’ll be giving ourselves a chance.”

Click HERE to watch an interview with Steven Pressley on iFollow United now.

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