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INTERVIEW: They deserved to win

Gav Skelton with Workington match reaction

8 March 2023

Hosts Workington came from behind twice in the first half at Borough Park on Tuesday night before then making best use of their second half possession to book their place in the semi-finals of this season’s Fred Conway Cumberland Cup competition.

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Speaking after the game, assistant manager Gav Skelton said: “Credit to Workington, they were the better side and deserved to win.

“It was probably an entertaining first half, lots of chances, some decent saves, second half was a little bit more even, but no complaints, Workington deserved to win. 

“They played some good stuff, they’re going well in the league, they were all first team players. For our younger lads it gives them a look at that, you could see the physicality, some of them did really well.

“It’s a good learning curve – if you don’t do the basics, if you can’t clear your lines or stop crosses, that’s the pros as well, you don’t give yourselves a platform.”

“It was a competitive game, a more entertaining first half than I anticipated,” he continued. “We got in front, but they were the better team.

“At half time we’re probably fortunate to be 2-2. No complaints with the result and credit to Workington. 

“From our point of view, it’s brilliant for Ryan Edmondson and Ben Barclay, who will have massive parts for us, and another big positive was Josh Dixon getting 15 minutes.

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“He had a couple of challenges that tested his knee. Pleased, because that means Edmo’s ahead of time, and a couple of challenges, he looked quite strong, took his goal well.

“Ben looked good as well, you could see when he went off, we conceded a couple of goals from crosses which affected the game. 

“To be fair, that’s 60 minutes for Ryan and Ben which puts them a week ahead of where they otherwise might be.

“Ryan has been training well, competitively, and tonight there were a couple of shoulder charges, and he’s ran and pressed, so that’s good to get him an hour. Ben’s timing of his headers was good. That is a really pleasing factor for both of them tonight. 

“I think everybody is pleased for Josh. All the lads are pleased for him. In terms of injuries, he’s had a horrendous time. He’ll be pleased to get 15 minutes and he did well. He showed what a good player he can be.”

And expanding more on what the younger platers can take from it, he told us: “It’s hard, under the lights, a good crowd, they’re new to the game.

“The things we didn’t do right wasn’t a reflection on the young boys, there were some pros in there that didn’t do themselves justice, if I’m honest. It’s not fair to put it on the young lads.

“But they’ll have learned a lot. You have to do the basics – everything else they get obsessed by watching telly, rotations, dropping into this space. In League Two it’s don’t make mistakes and do the basics well.”

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