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Schofield points to lack of attacking quality in Hartlepool defeat

5 February 2023


Schofield points to lack of attacking quality in Hartlepool defeat

5 February 2023

Danny Schofield felt Rovers lacked quality in attacking areas as they fell to defeat against Hartlepool United.

Rovers had the majority of the attacking play during the game but failed to make pressure count and were undone with Dan Dodds’ late breakaway goal for the visitors.

Schofield on how the game played out:

“I think performance-wise, there was lots of it that I was really pleased with. The final third and the final action, not so much.

“There were one or two chances where I felt we could have done better in that moment. And the rest is creating chances but not ones that were clear cut.

“It’s difficult sometimes when a team is sitting in really deep and Hartlepool did that really well. We didn’t have that final action and quality in the final third to result in a goal.

“We were unsure on which players they’d select, which shape and tactical formation but it is what it is. We just dealt with that the best we could and focused on what we could do with and without the ball. For large parts of the game, I thought we were good but suffered on the counter late in the game.

“We conceded a number of goals in the previous game and we wanted to really improve on that, which I thought for large periods we did.

“We knew Hartlepool would come here full of fight. They’re fighting for their lives and we needed to be up for the challenge. That was my first message to the players.

“I thought we defended well and were aggressive enough and fell short in our attacking final third.”

On recovering from a difficult run of results:

“It’s a difficult moment. We need to stick together collectively and grow through this moment of adversity. We need to get the supporters back on board and you do that with even better performances and results.

“We’re all judged on the results and that will be our focus.”

On missing an opportunity to climb the league:

“Every defeat is a missed opportunity. We go into every game prepared to win in and first and foremost to be competitive and to try to implement what we can do on a game.”

“It’s never part of the plan to lose football games. It’s about winning football games and we try to prepare the team as much as possible to do that. You’ve got another team wanting to do the same thing and in the last three games we’ve fallen short on that front.”

On the performance of the recent additions to the squad:

“I think they’ve been really positive since they’ve come into the club. They’ve integrated quickly with the rest of the players and they’ve all been positive signings. I’m sure with more time they’ll add some more quality to the team.”

On Ben Nelson’s withdrawal from the game:

“He’s being assessed. The first thoughts is that it’s just cramp that continued to persist and bother him a bit more. We’ll assess that in the coming hours to see how he recovers from it.”

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