Tisdale and Stevenage back on the learning curve after defeat at home to Bradford

Charlie Carter of Stevenage goes close to a goal during Stevenage vs Bradford City, Sky Bet EFL Leag

Charlie Carter sends a shot across goal and wide during Stevenage's 1-0 defeat at home to Bradford City. - Credit: GAVIN ELLIS/TGS PHOTO

Stevenage's defeat to Bradford City has presented manager Paul Tisdale with a new set of conundrums to solve - how to play his squad to their strengths.

Stevenage lost 1-0 at home, their first reverse of the new year, with a much-changed side struggling to find the same fluency as in the last few weeks.

Tisdale had sprung a surprise with his team selection as injuries robbed him of notable players, including striker Luke Norris.

It meant Charlie Carter, starting for the first time since his return from injury, played in the lone striker role until a first-half injury to Ed Upson allowed him to bring a fit gain Elliott List into the fray.

Ultimately though the effort was not enough.

Alex Bass of Bradford City denies Stevenage's Arthur Read in the closing stages of the League Two match.

Alex Bass of Bradford City denies Stevenage's Arthur Read in the closing stages of the League Two match. - Credit: GAVIN ELLIS/TGS PHOTO

The boss said: "We weren’t at our best and we didn’t give ourselves a platform for any type of attacks in the final third, or as many as them anyway. 

"Our balls forward and the way we connected weren’t as productive. They had a better platform. 

"We had a decent go in the last 20 minutes, changed our rhythm and the way we played to try and create something.

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"We changed our pattern to try and get the goal. We changed it to play to the players’ strengths. 

"Our issue was earlier in the game, we didn’t have that, not for the want of trying. 

"I would have liked to have done better. 

"It was clear in that first 20 minutes we were lacking a centre-forward. 

"I was asking Charlie Carter to do something that maybe wasn’t necessarily fair for him so I took the opportunity to put a centre-forward on. 

"It’s a learning curve for all of us in terms of what those bring, their skill-sets and how we connect them. 

"We didn’t get that right in the first half."

Michael Bostwick of Stevenage goes close to scoring against Bradford City.

Michael Bostwick of Stevenage goes close to scoring against Bradford City. - Credit: GAVIN ELLIS/TGS PHOTO

He is now looking forward to the daunting trip to Barrow but he is not too disheartened despite one point from the last three games.

"I’m trying to be philosophical about it," he said. "The players tried hard and there will be one or two things we'll take from the game.

"It is not because the players coming in are lesser players, they are just different. 

"The rhythm we built and the dynamic we built was suddenly altered. 

"For the first time I was looking at certain players playing in certain positions and doing certain things. 

"In January we built a nice rhythm with a consistent set of players. 

"That’s the challenge for me. I have to find different ways for them to connect and be productive."