Manager's reaction after Swindon draw
Neal Ardley admitted that his side lacked the quality to break down Swindon today, but he was far from disheartened about the draw.
Speaking during a post-match interview for Dons Player after the 0-0 draw, Neal said: “We knew that we had to be good without the ball today. I know everyone wants us to over-run teams and stuff like that and we were probably expected to win this one based on the league table, but I’m not too despondent. We did not play at our best with the ball, but without the ball I thought we retained our shape quite well and limited them to not much.
“Down the other end we wanted to hurt them with our penetration, but our crossing was poor. Too often we did not beat the first man or the crosses were too close to the goalkeeper, but we have to give credit to Swindon. They did their homework on us and they did their jobs well. They nullified us and we nullified them. In the end it was a pretty tepid game, but it’s a point towards where we want to go.
“We lacked a bit of quality today, but it’s a point and a clean sheet. In a not very exciting game we have come away with something. Swindon moved the ball well. They did not really keep a shape and sometimes that’s hard to defend against because you get pulled about here, there and everywhere. There were one or two times when they pulled us about and ended up with an overload against us, but we got blocks in and around our box. We needed to do that and see our jobs through.”
Neal added that responsibility for taking penalties – one was missed today by Lyle Taylor – was left to the players.
“Lyle was our penalty taker at the end of last season and if he’s on the pitch he gets that opportunity,” Neal said. “Dean Parrett took one and scored so he may well get the opportunity now. Hopefully, next time Dean will probably say, ‘I want it if I’m on the pitch’. I will leave that between the boys as we try and allow them more responsibility.”
Full post-match reaction from Neal is now on Dons Player and an interview with Paul Robinson will follow tomorrow.