Neal Ardley felt that his team deserved more out of today’s match against Plymouth Argyle and he said it summed up Wimbledon’s season so far.
Speaking in his post-match interview for iFollow, Neal said: “I am gutted with the result. I didn’t think we deserved to lose, but then I didn’t think we deserved to lose on Tuesday night either. It’s tough to take, the boys did everything I asked of them: they were brave, they attacked, and created chances. I thought we were the better team for most of the first-half and I thought we were the better team for 20-25 minutes of the second-half, until the goal. The goal came out of nowhere for me. A load of things led to it, but the boys are not happy with it themselves. They were down in there. My job is to give them the belief because we haven’t turned into a bad team overnight. When the results are not going your way, you snatch at your chances, and we need a result to turn that around.
“It will hurt today and tomorrow, just as much as it hurt the fans. They have all travelled down, they are not happy, but it’s margins that are hurting us at the moment. We limited them to not much, until the last 10 minutes when we were chasing the game. We were the better team for spells, but we’ve had two or three good chances and we haven’t taken them. It’s the story of our season, but we have to keep believing that if we get the swagger back into our game and the results come, we can be a good team.”
The second-half moment when Jake Jervis was denied by Plymouth keeper Matt Macey was certainly a turning point in the game.
“Deji did well, Jake did everything right in attacking the back post, but it comes off his heel,” added Neal. “It’s still going in, but the keeper makes an unbelievable save. Those moments are not quite happening for us and they get a short corner, we switch off, there were a number of things that led to that, and we’ve been punished for it. That’s the way it’s going at the moment: results hurt, I’m judged by results, and I understand that. I am giving everything and the players care, whether people realise it or not, and we have to keep going, keep believing. I still believe we are a very good team, I believe we can turn it around, and we need to stick together to do it.”
Neal said that he hopes to have James Hanson back for the home match against Portsmouth with the striker having missed out on today’s game due to a hamstring injury.
Pic credit: Graham Hunt, Pro Sports Images.