That's the message from coach Alan Reeves
Alan Reeves said that young players in his development squad must learn from a tough afternoon against Southend today after conceding five second-half goals.
Following a bright first-half against an experienced Southend side, it was a different story after the break and the young Dons were eventually beaten 5-3 in the Final Third Development League Cup.
“It was a crazy game,” said Alan. “In the first-half I thought we played really well. We kept the ball when we had possession and carved them open at times. But in the second half we came out and for 15 minutes we were all over the place. Three of their goals came from crosses down one side. If you don’t learn from it the first time and it happens three times then you have to ask yourselves some questions.
“I told the lads afterwards that they need to learn from this. They have conceded five goals in 45 minutes and that cannot happen again. We got back into the game and then shot ourselves in the foot by conceding a fifth. Some lads have absolutely worked their socks off and we had decent individual performances out there. For 25 minutes in the second-half though we played like 11 individuals. That cannot happen and we have to perform like a team.”
Despite his own goal, 16-year-old centre-back Paul Kalambayi emerged with great credit as Alan Reeves was full of praise for his performance.
“I want to give a special mention to Paul,” added Alan. “I have told him not to worry about his own goal. For an Under-21 debut, he played out of his skin. He shouldn’t let that own goal affect him as apart from that he did not put a foot wrong. Paul won his headers, he was aggressive, and decent in possession. For a 16-year-old, he has every chance.”