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Club News

MANAGER: We've got players who can create

Paul Simpson on clean sheets and goals

21 February 2023

Club News

MANAGER: We've got players who can create

Paul Simpson on clean sheets and goals

21 February 2023

A mix of no-risk defending and working hard as a team earned the Blues clean sheet number 13 against Colchester on Saturday, and the overall solidity provided a platform for the win that kept the home team in the top three spots.

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Speaking after the game, manager Paul Simpson said: “I think if you look at many of the goals that we've conceded, they come from mistakes of ours.

“Mansfield the other night, they tore us open on quite a number of occasions, so for Colchester it had to be a no-risk game.

“In the end they made a mistake, we scored from it. We conceded against Harrogate with a mistake. We conceded at Northampton with a mistake. I could go on and on and on.

“It's minimising those mistakes, it's minimising the risks without playing with fear. And we know that if we can get the ball into the opposition half, and especially in the final third, we've got players who can create, we've got players who can score and that's where we want to be playing our football.

“We saw that with the chances we made on Saturday. We played some good football to get ourselves in, particularly with the Mellish chance.

“I thought Colchester caused us problems, but I can’t think of too many times where Tomas was really tested.

“I thought he was excellent in the way he took crosses and I spoke to him this week to tell him that the reason we brought him here was for him to use his height and physicality to get out and take things.

“I think he should be dealing with things in the box, and I’m really pleased for him with how he played. I’m pleased for the whole team to get the clean sheet because I’m constantly demanding that they have the desire not to concede goals.

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“I think we are capable of scoring goals, and hopefully getting that one will take the monkey off our backs of not having scored in the previous three.

“Getting it so early was huge because everybody gets even nervier. I didn’t need to remind them that we hadn’t scored in a few games.

“Scoring early lifts that a little bit, lifts the spirit, gives the fans something to go to, gives us something to hang onto. The one thing we did say at half time is we don't want to sit back and just try and rest on a one-nil.

“We needed to stay front foot and be positive. Unfortunately, we weren't able to get another goal. I just think the way we went about our defensive side of it was outstanding and that's what got us through.”

“Like I say, Tomas was brave and without a doubt keepers need clean sheets for their confidence,” he continued. “We’re getting towards the number of clean sheets we want, and I like it when we get clean sheets.

“It gives us a real hell of a fighting chance, so we need more. I want a minimum of probably four or five more between now and the end of the season. With that sort of determination and attitude, we've got every chance of doing it.  

“Towards the end of the game, when some big players came on, I thought we defended set plays really well. I thought Tomas came and helped us in those situations.

“Overall there was a lot of good things today from the defensive side of it and areas on the forward play that we know we can improve.”


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