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Coley: We beat ourselves today

Stanley’s manager discusses the 3-1 defeat to Sunderland

15 September 2019

Accrington Stanley manager John Coleman was adamant that his team must improve and that they must do so quickly following the 3-1 defeat at home to Jack Ross’ Sunderland.

Stanley had a great start when Jordan Clark scored on five minutes, but Coleman admitted that his side defended poorly and that Sunderland had been allowed back into the game by the mistakes of his players.

“We beat ourselves today, let’s get it straight, people will laud Sunderland for being clinical and having good players, and they have, but the game could be a lot different.

“I think you can see that they tried to play out the game in the second half and I think we were the better team overall, they had a chance and that would have made it disgustingly 4-1, but we’ve got to learn and we’ve got to learn quickly.

“As a team we just don’t defend properly, and if you don’t defend properly then you’re going to lose games, especially against quality forwards like they’ve got.

“We’ve had an unbelievable start with Jordan Clark scoring a great goal, we go to sleep from a throw-in to let them equalise and we don’t have the time to enjoy being in the lead and put the pressure on them and get the crowd to turn on them.”

Coleman also went on to say that football is a game of fine margins, and that his side need to add little aspects to their game if they are to become a consistent side.

“The turning point of the game is probably Colby (Bishop) hitting the underside of the bar and we’ve stood still like statues instead of following in and putting it in, if that goes in its 2-2.

“Instead we make a pass to give them a clean breakaway and they score and then the other turning point is Jordan (Clark) hitting a shot that’s bound for the net and it’s hit Dion (Charles) right in the face on the line, you can’t legislate for that, it just happens and you have to accept it.

“We showed a lot of desire and work-rate but we’re still naive, and we’re so naive defensively, until we get that right, it’s going to be a long hard struggle.”

Stanley’s manager also explained how there wasn’t that much to separate the two sides on the pitch, and that his players have to perform better.

“I’m really low because we’ve lost to Sunderland the club there, and not Sunderland the team, and that’s the only way I can equate it to our players.

“They were no better than us today, they finished better than us but I can’t say they defended better than us because of the chances we had, but we’ve got to be better than that.”

Coleman also admitted that there may be changes that need to be made ahead of Stanley’s next couple of fixtures.

“We set out with a gameplan and it started off like dreamland and it’s ended up in nightmare territory, but the person who has to bare the brunt of it is me, I pick the team, I put the players out there, I tell them the formation to play, I tell them the style to play.

“If you’re asking people to do things and they don’t do them, then somebody else is going to have to have the opportunity to do them.”


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