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Neal angry with the manner of defeat

Manager interviewed after loss against Scunthorpe

15 September 2018

Neal Ardley pulled no punches with his assessment of today's defeat for Wimbledon against Scunthorpe United.

The manager felt his players had fallen way short of the standards required in defeat at home against Stuart McCall's men.

"I am really angry," said Neal. "The staff worked really hard to prepare the boys for the game. We gave the boys everything they needed today in as far as they (Scunthorpe) had scored five of their goals in the last four games from set pieces. For an in-swinging free-kick to go straight in the middle of your goal is awful and it's not good enough.

"With the second goal, the last thing I said to the defenders was to solve their counter-attacking. We wanted to push forward and get at them, so the counter-attacking was a problem that needed solving. We had talked to them about that. We gave the ball away and within two passes they are one-on-one and through on goal. Then when you get back to 2-1 in the second-half, the last thing you do is play Russian Roulette as a team. We conceded a really sloppy third goal. Ultimately, when you concede three goals like that, it's not good enough."

Neal added that his side have to do more to start picking up points in this division.

"Early season you are trying to embed something," said Neal. "Today there was not enough there to win a game of football. To win games of football you play from your shape, you work off your shape, you create chances. We didn't play with any quality. I thought for the first 15 minutes we showed real intent and signs of good play, but the mentality when we went 2-0 down was poor. I thought for that 20-minute spell after that second goal we went to pieces. That's a fragility in your mentality. That's an anxiety that creeps into the group, you start playing like 11 individuals.

"We've worked hard on group leadership. When you put a young team together you have to get them to have group leadership, but they didn't and they crumbled until half-time. It took, not so much of a rollicking, but a bit of clarity from me for them to come out in the second-half and play the way that they did.

"You cannot concede three goals at home. We want to put out an attacking team, we want to have a go at teams. In the second-half we showed all that attacking intent in our play, but we conceded another goal. I am angry, I am disappointed and frustrated. I've let them know that in there. They are all talking about things after the event and I've told them 'no', you have to solve the problems before they happen, not talk about what could have been done better afterwards."

Neal Ardley confirmed that James Hanson missed out on the squad due to a calf strain and the manager hopes he will be back for the away game at Accrington Stanley next Saturday.

Watch the full interview on iFollow with Neal by clicking on the link above.


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