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Club News

‘The Scoreline Wasn’t A Reflection’

27 August 2013

Manager Simon Grayson was proud of his players and fans despite going out of the Cpaital One Cup in the second round at Turf Moor.

The North End boss, speaking after his side’s first defeat of the 2013/14 season was delighted with the display of his side and felt they deserved something from the game.

“We dominated possession for large parts of the game; their keeper made some good saves and we limited them to very few opportunities,” he said in the post-match press conference. “The goals we gave away were scruffy goals and ones we could have prevented, but we passed the ball with a purpose, we closed down and worked hard and that is a testament to the players that they reacted in the way I wanted them to after the weekend.

“Both goals came against the run of play. Stucky probably feels he could have done better with the first and the second came after we got on top and then in the second half we were the dominant team. We got the ball into the right areas and on another day we could quite easily have got something from that game, the scoreline wasn’t a true reflection on the game.

“I reiterated to the players at half time that if we could get one, we could have gone on to win the game, but we just couldn’t get that one to get us back into the game. But the players stuck at it; put Burnley under a lot of pressure and their goalkeeper made some great saves.”

The manager made six changes from the side that drew 4-4 against Coventry just 48 hours before and also used a different formation, with three at the back and he was pleased with how the team adapted, reserving particular praise for two players who haven’t seen much game time since he took over as PNE boss.

“We tried a different formation tonight, with a few players coming into the side who haven’t played so far this season and full credit to them with the way they handled themselves in that situation and those coming into the team.

“It is nice to have options. I thought Scott Laird did a good job and there should be a special mention for Joel Byrom who has not played too much under me, but tonight he won a lot of second balls and passed it very efficiently, had some great shots on target and did everything we asked him to do tonight and I thought there were a lot of good performances on the night.

“We said after the Coventry game that there were places up for grabs. It was a disappointing performance at Coventry, even though we drew an players got the shirt tonight, some by resting players and others by performances and if you’re given an opportunity to get into the team, then you have to do whatever you can to keep that spot and after tonight’s performance it gives me a few problems for the weekend.”

And he finished by praising the amazing travelling support, with 3,000 packed in the away end at Burnley: “The supporters were fantastic; you’d have thought it was a home game. 

“They made a lot of noise and that I thought also reflected the players’ performance. 

“They were fully justified in a little bit of criticism of the team at the weekend, but tonight they followed the team, supported them and both us and the supporters gave a good account of ourselves tonight and all credit to them.”

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