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Club News

Final Whistle - Aldershot

24 February 2013

Graham Alexander was left disappointed by his teams first off showing against Aldershot Town, and will be looking for a quick response when Cheltenham visit Highbury on Tuesday.

By Tom Bestwick

Graham Alexander was left disappointed by his teams first off showing against Aldershot Town, and will be looking for a quick response when Cheltenham visit Highbury on Tuesday.

A fiery contest saw Fleetwood have both Jamie McGuire and Alan Goodall sent off in the 2-0 defeat at the EBB Stadium, but Alexander pointed to the disappointing first-half performance for being the course of his sides downfall. Alexander said: “We were really disappointing today; the first 45 minutes was not acceptable by any stretch. We wasted half a game today. All this way to give that, it’s just not acceptable. We have to learn from this and we have to learn quickly, because we cannot carry on playing as we did in that first 45 minutes. “As a group we were not competitive, we didn’t pass the ball, we just didn’t do anything we expect off a professional football team. Second half we showed a lot more, but then things went against us.” Town had to play more than half an hour with 10 men after McGuire was shown a red card for a push on midfielder Oliver Risser, before Alan Goodall was sent off 12 minutes later when the defender looked to foul Danny Hylton in the box. Even after the first red card, Alexander felt his side were well in the game, and had a good chance of taking something from it, but he admits that Goodall’s sending off ended his team’s hopes of getting a result. “Even after one dismissal, we had 10 men and I still felt we had a good chance of getting something out of the game. I thought the lads played it well, and were still competitive at that stage and I thought we were taking the game to Aldershot. The second one killed us, it is damage limitations after that and we are making sure it stays at two. “Realistically with nine men, what do we do? Do we open like we did get last week and get done for four goals? That was with 10 men, but with nine men it just gets even harder. The lads that were left on the pitch absolutely worked their socks off to make sure we stayed in the game, but it was too little to late.” “Jamie’s been silly in the first place by raising his hands. The lad has gone down like alot of players do now days, he;s done a job for his team and got us down to 10 men. You don’t give them opportunities like that; you don’t give the opposition opportunities to do that to you. “The second wasn’t a red in my opinion. Goody (Goodall) hasn’t looked to touch the lad at all, and he’s gone over, and we then go down to nine men. We have to learn, because we have to be professional, and we have to make sure we don’t give the opposition opportunities to hurt us, not just in football terms, but also in professional terms.” David Lucas made his full debut in place of the suspended Scott Davies, and despite conceding two goals, he was on hand to make a string of fine saves and also denied Aldershot striker Craig Reid from the penalty spot, and Alexander was pleased with how the 35-year-old performed, and recognised him as a real competitor to Davies. “It was a great save from Lucas (the penalty save), I thought he made a couple of really good saves as well, but we gave them way to many opportunities, and we didn’t want Lucas tested in that way so many times. He is there to do a job, and I thought he did it. I don’t think he had any chance with the goals to be honest. It is good to know we have real competition for Scotty just now.” Alexander’s focus will now turn to Tuesday night’s home clash with promotion chasing Cheltenham Town, and the Town boss only has one target in mind. Three points. “We just have to concentrate on the lads who are fit and available, and free from suspension. Whatever team we put out we have to make sure it is a competitive one that will take the game to Cheltenham and look for the three points. We’re not going to moan about it, everyone can see that the squad is depleted at the minute, but we still expect to have enough to win a game of football on Tuesday, and that’s what we are aiming for.”

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