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McSheffrey taking positives from defeat

26 September 2021

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U18s manager Gary McSheffrey wants to see more consistency from his side who fell to a 2-0 defeat away at Mansfield Town in the EFL Youth Cup.

Goals either side of half-time from the Stags meant Rovers have now suffered two defeats in their opening three games of the cup competition with the group stage set to finish with a game against Oldham Athletic on October 7. 

McSheffrey's assessment of the game: 

“A positive from the game was that we limited their chances. The second goal was a bit of a freak one which you don't see often.

"We finished strong, but it shouldn’t take going 2-0 down to start competing. They need to be braver and have better composure to play at 0-0. We didn’t look a threat until we went behind. We finished strong, hitting the post and forcing their goalkeeper into good saves.  

“Let's show that confidence and composure from kick-off. That’s where players go on to make it in the game. You have to be able to play when the pressure is on. 

“Maybe it is because the weight is off their shoulders and the shackles are off allowing them to start playing. 

“I’m looking for consistency and progression in our performance."

On how injuries are providing opportunities for first year scholars: 

“We have four of our key attacking players out and our right back Tom Henson, who is a solid second year. 

“It gives opportunities for the other players - we have a big squad of 20 players so we’re fortunate enough we can cover their absences.  

“The other players need to learn to deal with the pressure. A lot of first years played and in the long-term that will put them in good shape for next year.”

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