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INTERVIEW: Coley on the trip to Gillingham

"We have to defend better and we know we can defend better:" Reds boss

14 December 2020

John Coleman’s is glad his team have the chance to immediately ‘right the wrongs’ as the Reds make the trip to Gillingham tomorrow night (kick off 5.30pm).

Stanley’s seven-game unbeaten league run came to end with a 4-3 defeat at Wigan on Saturday but Coleman is happy they have an immediate chance to try and bounce back.

“That’s the beauty of football,” said the Stanley boss, whose side are in 10th place in the table. “You have the chance to right the wrongs immediately.

“It would have been difficult if we had a week or two to stew on that defeat but we will learn from it, analyse it and move on and hopefully get better.”

Coleman admitted the Latics loss hurt but their full focus is now on the 12th placed Gills, managed by Steve Evans.

“We have parked it now, we have got over it. We have analysed the game again, there are lots of things we could have done and should have done differently but we got what we deserved ultimately, we didn’t play well enough to win the game.

“I know people will highlight the two penalty incidents – one that they got which was outside the box and one that we didn’t get that was inside the box - but we shouldn’t be looking for a referee, that game shouldn’t have unfolded the way it did.

“A lot of it was down to the first goal, it was sloppy defending from us and we never recovered from it. It got their tails up and you have to give them credit, people will say we played badly and that’s why they won, but they played well but we know we can play better.

“When you have seven or eight players who are below par it’s difficult to win any game.

“There were a couple of bright spots  - I thought Mark Hughes had an excellent game and I thought Joe Pritchard played well and the subs did make a difference and that’s no detriment to the players who came off as I could have taken anyone off.

“We have to defend better and we know we can defend better and, in the main, we have defended better this season.

“We can’t say it’s one of those days and a blip as we have plenty more games to play and the proof of the pudding will be if we go back to defending the way we have been doing. We will see and work harder trying to get it right tomorrow.”

Coleman has been in the game long enough and he won’t let the one loss get him down.

“I don’t get carried away when we win or are on a good run and I won’t get carried away with defeats and being harsh on the players.

“The players are a great set of lads, they work hard and Saturday was one of them days when everything that could go against us does and you have to accept it in football.

“I was talking to John Doolan this morning and said it’s like a bag of Revels - every now and again you are going to get a coffee one.

“You don’t want one but you are going to get the coffee one at some stage and if you aren’t prepared for that don’t buy a bag of Revels. Don’t be involved in the football if you are not prepared for those bad days.”

Coleman has come up against Evans when he has been manager of Boston, Rotherham, Crawley, Peterborough and more in the past.

“Steve has always produced good, winning sides. They have been on a good run, similar to us, and then they lost to Doncaster on Saturday  

“He was quite critical of his team’s performance in the first half and then they did improve in the second half and I have watched bits of the game and he is probably accurate with his reflection.

“We know the style of football they are going to play and we have got to try and find a way to combat that.”

Coleman has no new injury worries with Mo Sangare and Ross Sykes still out.

“You don’t knee jerk react to things, there are going to be tired legs, we were off for two weeks and a lot of the lads have been seriously ill.

“That has to take some kind of effect on us, we know that, we had a couple of bumps and bruises on Saturday, whatever team we put out I know they will give me their all.”

The full pre-match interview video with John Coleman is available to watch on the club's official YouTube channel, CLICK HERE to find out more!


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