Manager's reaction after letting lead slip twice
Neal Ardley refused to be too downhearted after his side twice let a lead slip against lowly Tranmere Rovers today.
A second-half Tranmere Rovers fightback meant that the Dons had to settle for a draw that was tinged with frustration.
Speaking to Dons Player, Neal Ardley said: “It’s tough because we did the best that we could. We scrapped and fought for everything. We’ve got a point and it should have been three after the first-half. It’s hard to pick too many faults. We were tiring towards the end a little and because of that we lacked a bit of quality and bravery in our play. Once we started to get our full-backs pushing on and passing the ball we gained more of a foothold on the game again. Ade Azeez gave us that pace to stretch them late on.
“We’re disappointed that we let the lead slip and that we didn’t really get going again in the second-half, but I think there were a lot of positives to take from it. In the first-half some of our play was exceptional, in particular down the flanks. Jack Smith got to the byline to score his goal and Barry Fuller did the same to set-up Bayo for the second so that gives an indication of our attacking intent.”
Neal added that he was disappointed with the manner of Tranmere’s equaliser, which was conceded from a corner kick midway through the second-half.
“They switched to 3-4-3 and had their wing-backs extremely high because they had nothing to lose,” Neal said. “You are looking to protect your lead, but it meant we dropped a lot deeper to deal with their big lads. The ball started to stick up there and they built up momentum. Our wingers had to track back because we were winning and we didn’t want to take chances. Even though they had good spells, it was a set-piece that did us and that’s disappointing because we work hard on those.”
Dons Player subscribers can now watch the full post-match reaction with Neal Ardley and an interview with Sean Rigg.