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Interviews

Neal’s post-match interview after home defeat

Manager's reaction after Dons are beaten by Bradford

2 October 2018

Neal Ardley said it was a loss that was hard to accept against Bradford tonight after Wimbledon failed to make the most of superior possession and chances.

Speaking after the 1-0 defeat at the Cherry Red Records Stadium, Neal said: "We played a hell of a lot better than we did on Saturday, but we have lost the game. It is hard to accept. We are all feeling hurt because we were hoping for a good week. We have to turn our attentions now to Saturday and try and make it a good week. The other day the fans were having to get behind the team with us defending, but tonight we were in the ascendancy. We did a lot of things right, but we just made a schoolboy error to concede a goal and we haven't taken our chances. We have to move on to the next game, that is all we can do.

"You don't win games of football if you make mistakes at the back, which we've made a lot of this season. If you also don't take your chances I am going to be standing here saying that it's the same old story. We work on every facet of the game as coaches all week. The energy was good, we lost our shape a little bit near the end, and they got a couple of one on ones, but that was in desperation from us to get a goal. If it would have been 0-0 they probably wouldn't have got those chances, we would have been pressing for a winner and not an equaliser.

"Joe Pigott had a good chance and if he knew the keeper had gone down he might have composed himself a bit more and maybe not rushed it. Kwesi has had a chance in the middle of the goal late on that he has headed over somehow and with Jake Jervis's one we were all up thinking it had gone in, but it was cleared off the line. Anthony Wordsworth has had one too. The other day we had two chances all game and we took them to win 2-1. Today we've had five or six and we played a lot better than we did on Saturday, but one slip or moment of madness has cost us and we've lost a game we were in control of."

The full post-match interview with Neal is available to watch by clicking on the link to our iFollow channel above.

On the vital decision by referee Keith Stroud to award the all-important penalty against Deji Oshilaja, Neal said: "It's a tough one, I thought it was soft at best, but you run the risk when you dangle a foot. I am more disappointed that it was a clearance down the channel when we had the major pressure in the game. It was the only place the lad could put the ball.

"To end up being in a position of being square with the forward and he's running in behind you, meaning you have to do the one-v-one defending, is poor in the first place. We need to assess that and go through that, but once you are there you make him cross the ball at best, you don't dangle your foot. We have run the risk.

"Whether it's soft or not, it was the 45th minute of a match we were dominating and we believed the goal would come. Then your half-time team talk has to change. You are chasing the game and those moments when the chances came, we did not take them."


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