The opposition are working harder than us in the big games, says Westley

10:41 07 April 2014

Luke Freeman is tackled. Photo: Alan Millard

Luke Freeman is tackled. Photo: Alan Millard

Archant

Interview and photos: Stevenage boss calls for more bravery as the fight for League 1 survival intensifies

Both Graham Westley and Mike Jackson give instructions on the touchline. Photo: Alan MillardBoth Graham Westley and Mike Jackson give instructions on the touchline. Photo: Alan Millard

Graham Westley says Shrewsbury showed more courage than his side and questioned why it was that opposition teams are ‘working harder than us’ in big games.

The Stevenage manager was critical of his side following their 1-0 defeat on Saturday in a result that leaves them bottom of the League 1 table and four points from safety with just five games of the season remaining.

“What I hope the players learn about difficult situations - and let’s face facts this is difficult - you have to play with courage, not when things have gone wrong and you react to that, but you have to play with courage from the start.

“What we didn’t show was enough quality and desire to take our game forward.

“It takes big men to pull the shirts on, to perform when the heat is on. Today can be a catalyst and a turning point.

“I agree that the conviction in front of goal is lacking, but that’s about work ethic and that’s about courage – the two words I keep going on about.

“If you are going to be successful in anything you do, you have got to be brave and be prepared to work harder than the opposition. I think in key games oppositions are working harder than us and showing more courage than us.

“First half we did not impose ourselves on the game in the way I think we should have done.”

Westley was missing the services of John Mousinho (leg injury) and took off Simon Heslop midway through the first half saying his midfielder was ‘struggling with energy levels’.

Stevenage also lost Darius Charles at the break on Saturday, and as a result switched to three at the back but were left exposed down their left-hand side in the second half – a position from which Jon Taylor snuck into the box to score the winning goal just before the hour mark.

“We suffered the injury to Darius, Hessy was struggling with his energy levels after the other night [against Wolves], he put a big shift in. We hoped he was alright but he struggled to get a grip on the midfield,” Westley said.

“Until we changed it I did not feel we had a foothold in the game. Once we did change it I felt we had a couple of moments. Once we got our game going forward, they did have some counter attacking moments but a lot of the pressure was ours.

“When you are playing with a back three, there will be moments when their wide players get at the space that can exist out there, but I didn’t think it caused us a huge problem.

“Taylor is a dangerous player and a quick ball player and if you have got Taylor with those spaces on occasions it can be difficult. But he’s won the game through a moment of us going off game.

“We are trying to dribble out of our defensive third when that isn’t the way we play.”

* For photos from the match, click on the link on the right

0 comments

More news stories

Yesterday, 17:31
Villagers and supporters outside the former Windmill pub are making an appeal to NHDC to have a clause in the forthcoming local plan to prevent 'the last remaining community facility in any village' from being closed or having its use changed

The campaign to save a riverside pub has taken a new twist with supporters lobbying North Herts District Council to include a clause protecting community facilities in the Local Plan blueprint for development in the area.

Yesterday, 16:43
Stevenage had the lowest suicide rate of any local authortiy area in the UK in 2014

Fewer people in Stevenage took their own lives in 2014 compared to any other part of the UK, new figures reveal.

Yesterday, 13:59
Allied Healthcare regional director Matt Jackson.

A community hub is opening up in Letchworth to provide information and advice on all aspects of care.

Yesterday, 12:28
Two ambulances were called to the crash at Juntion 7 on the A1(M)

Ambulances are still at the scene of a three-car collision on the A1(M) this morning.

Other Stevenage FC News

”North

Most read stories

Most commented stories

Digital Edition

Image
Read the The Comet e-edition E-edition