Wally Downes said it was important not to lose the match against Shrewsbury today and he believes it’s still all to play for in the battle to stay up.
Speaking to iFollow after the 0-0 draw, our manager said: “The fans have seen how much effort we put in, they’re not stupid, they know what sort of game it was. It wasn’t a free-flowing football match, and the important thing with games like that is that you don’t come away losing them. We didn’t have lots of chances, but it would have been a classic hit and run. They didn’t have that many chances, but if we would have won 1-0 then you come away and it’s marvellous, but we did the next best thing – we kept a clean sheet and got a point.
“There is almost a quarter of the season to go, 30 odd points still up for grabs. I am largely disinterested in how the other results have gone. We just have to focus on what we are doing and pick-up as many points as we can.”
Wally was pleased with the way his young defence acquitted themselves in testing conditions at Shrewsbury.
“You try and win if you can, but certainly it wasn’t conducive to good football today. It was a matter of playing against the prevailing conditions, trying to keep a clean sheet, and nick one if you can. If you look at the age of their defenders today, they are seasoned professionals, but our boys aren’t. It’s probably the first time a few of them have played in conditions like that at senior level. It’s a learning process and it was good that they came through it with a clean sheet.
“We had a great opportunity late on when their keeper got injured. If we had been a bit more clinical there we could have scored. The pass could have been better and Michael may have scored. That’s the sort of thing when you could come away with a 1-0 that you may not have absolutely deserved, but you go away and you nick it. Unfortunately, we didn’t nick it, but we didn’t lose it.
“With the formation and the players we had, I knew that if we were still in the game with 20 minutes to go we could throw James Hanson on and play with three forwards. That’s what we did and their substitutions didn’t make any difference to me at all.