Stevenage boss Darren Sarll fumes after late Crewe equaliser: We lacked leadership and character – we were rubbish

PUBLISHED: 18:36 10 March 2018 | UPDATED: 18:46 10 March 2018

Stevenage took on Crewe at the Lamex on Saturday. Credit: @laythy29 Twitter and Instagram

Stevenage took on Crewe at the Lamex on Saturday. Credit: @laythy29 Twitter and Instagram


Stevenage boss Darren Sarll was furious with his players after his side let in a 97th minute equaliser to allow Crewe to draw 2-2 at the Lamex on Saturday. Read the full transcript of his remarkable post-match interview.

Reaction to the 2-2 draw...

I am furious. What a way to throw the game a way. The thing that really hurt most was when we were supposed to be seeing the game out we had more experienced players on the pitch. The young lads were struggling to get to grips with [seeing the game out].

So [Jonathan] Smith comes on [Fraser] Franks comes on and we didn’t see it out.

It was absolutely appalling. I am absolutely furious. My players will pay for that. I can’t accept that and I can’t stomach it.

I thought we were below average. The [playing] surface [at the Lamex] we have doesn’t allow you to pick up any momentum in your play.

Positives to take...

I thought Bowditch did terrifically well for 60 minutes. I thought we were doing ok and at the start of the second half I wanted us to do better.

At 2-0 you just managed the game and take your time. And we did until their first goal.

But a right-footed full-back cutting in on his left to fire into the top corner from 25 yards?

We didn’t push ourselves. It was stomach churning.

Was Crewe’s 97th minute equaliser from Charlie Kirk offside?

I’ve no idea where they got the seven minutes injury time. Are referees punished if they make mistakes? I’m punished if I make mistakes.

I’ve seen the goal. Is it offside? I don’t think it is? It just looks like [Charlie Kirk] runs off the back of [Terrence] Vancooten and [Ben] Kennedy.

But we miss a header leading up to it. These are grown men. We can’t give possession away so cheaply.

Come on this is a game of football. We can’t treat it like we’re rolling around in a park with your mates – this is serious stuff.

The fans thought you should have seen the game through....

Absolutely. I’m with them. There’s a big, big consequence coming the players way. It was rubbish. Absolutely rubbish. You go into the last two minutes of the game with an extra centre half and we’re at our biggest to deal with the last throw of the dice and we deal with it so poorly.

It’s a picture of where are. We lacked leaders out there.

The one thing I was brought up was to be a leader. We lacked character and leadership out there on the pitch.

I just can’t see how weak we’ve been. Pathetic.

There are no positives. Dean Bowditch is a very good player. Tom King’s a good goalie but there are no positives.

Have we been beaten? No. But we should have gone home with three points.

Why were the team lacking in leadership and character?

It’s a personality thing. Why? We’d have to go back to where the players were born and their nuture. Where they were brought up. It’s all those things that define you. And unfortunately in the modern generation we are lacking more and more personality and character because we don’t engage with anyone.

We listen to our iPhones and don’t engage with anyone.

That is just the generation of people coming through now.

But I am also disappointed in the senior players.

What repercussions will there be?

It always has stay in the dressing room. It has to private. They’ll have to wait and find out when they turn up [on Sunday] morning at the crack of dawn.

At 2-0 it looked like Boro were going to see the game out similar to the Port Vale home game earlier in the season?

We had a good chance from Johnny Goddard at 2-0 but it’s ifs, buts and maybe. We say it every week but if you don’t deal with the two boxes it’s irrelevant what goes on in between. Because in League Two most teams miss out the middle third. We lacked power in the box. Physical and mental.

We worked so hard to get ourselves in front. We work so hard during the week and a result like this feels like a wasted weeks work.

There can’t be a period of development and growth all the time. We should know how to see out games but the execution should come within.

It was so disappointing that we haven’t got another win at home where our form has been so good. But there will be consequences...

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