With United having found themselves a goal behind at Valley Parade on Saturday, when defender Kelvin Mellor jumped highest to nod home a back post delivery from an inswinging set piece, manager Steven Pressley once more spoke about the importance of getting things right from corners and free kicks at both ends of the pitch.
“We still have to defend certain moments better,” he said. “We’re sat here talking about set pieces again and that’s because we have to stop giving away goals from these set plays.
“We are working so hard to become a good team and in this league if you don’t defend set plays and you don’t score from set plays it can have a huge factor on the outcome. We must do both of those aspects better.”
“To improve we just have to have a better mentality in these moments,” he continued. “We all have jobs, the players have responsibilities on them where they have one-to-one, man-to-man situations, and each player knows he has to win his battle.
“These moments are costing us and it’s frustrating and disappointing.”
On how he’s working to improve things in those areas, he told us: “We’ve already changed a couple of things. We’ve tried, but ultimately my opinion of set plays is you can go zonal, man-to-man, or whatever, but it’s a mentality.
“We’re clear and precise in our preparation on that. But in these key moments players have to do their jobs and, as things stand, we’ve conceded too many. They’re costly, because we’re doing so many good things, yet when you lose a goal from these moments they change games.
“I’m disappointed and we have to work and work and work at both the marking but the mentality. That’s the biggest thing on these moments. You have to have the mentality not to lose a goal, or that you’re going to get on the end of it if you’ve got one in the opposition’s final third.”
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