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23 October 2013

Graham Alexander was left scratching his head and questioning how Fleetwood failed come away with three points after he watched his side narrowly lose at home to Scunthorpe United last night.

Iron striker Scott Winnall’s deflected goal just before the hour mark was enough to separate the two sides as goalkeeper Sam Slocombe put in a fine individual display to deny Fleetwood with a string of fine saves.

Despite the defeat, Fleetwood remain in the Sky Bet League 2 play-off places – only two points off the top three – and the Fleetwood manager believes his side are lacking luck in front of goal at the moment and went on to say his team are going to work hard in training to rediscover their killer touch ahead of Saturday’s visit to York City. 

He told Cod Army Player: “We’re scratching our heads; no way did we deserve to lose that game. 

“We created chances but couldn’t find the clinical touch and they have scored a deflected goal. 

“It is a bitter pill to take because on another day we could have won 3-1, but it is not falling for us at the moment in front of goal.
“I think that is two games in succession where we have hit the post early on and we just have been unfortunate in front of goal, which is unlike us. 

“We are pretty good in front of goal, we create a lot of chances like we have done tonight, but the killer touch wasn’t there and we have been done by a killer goal.

“We’re disappointed because we gave away possession quite cheaply and he’s taken a pot shot from 25 yards that has taken a deflection and gone in.  

“If you take into account the amount of shots on target and chances, and for Scunthorpe to win 1-0, I can look at the DVD and watch over it again, but I am just going to see the same things, which is a game we should have won. 

“We spoke about using the wide areas especially to get at Scunthorpe, when we did that, we looked a very good team, but when we went away from that, we played into their hands a little bit.
“When we moved the ball quickly, when we passed the ball quickly and got it wide, we created opportunities. 

“That’s where we looked like we were going to get our goal from but unfortunately we didn’t and we rue that.

“We’re on the end on a bit of bad fortune at the moment, we can’t control that, we have to try and focus on the things we can control. 

“We will do that in training Thursday and Friday going into the game Saturday and we have to believe we will create the same amount of opportunities, but we will take two or three. 

“We believe that will turn on Saturday. This is certainly a disappointing and bitter one to take.”

Alexander pinpointed the excellent performance of the visiting keeper, Sam Slocombe, and believes that on another day, Town would have won the game comfortably.

“A lot of people are saying that’s what they are there for and Scott has not had a save to make, apart from one, which he had no chance with because it took a vicious deflection. 

“Their keeper has made a few good saves; we have hit the post and had a couple flash wide. It just hasn’t dropped for us and another day we could have won that game comfortably, but it wasn’t to be.
“We are going to have to take it on the chin like we did on Friday and make sure we come in positive on Thursday and work hard on the training pitch to turn that bit of fortune and quality around in front of goal.”

The Town boss made four changes to his starting line-up as he continues to utilise his squad and keep players fresh, but Alexander insists Town will reap the benefits of his policy towards the end of the season.

“We have had a run of games with a couple long journeys and we are trying to keep the lads fresh. 

“We spoke to the lads about the benefits that will come towards the end of the season when we get into February, March and April time and we are feeling fresh and not rusty because we haven’t played too much. 

“It’s hard to look that far ahead, but that’s my job as the manager to look that far ahead and manage this group for the whole season, so we don’t want to get burnt out with anyone come that critical time of the season. 

“The lads that came in and came on last night did enough to win the game but unfortunately we didn’t.”

Meanwhile, Alexander said there were plenty of positives to take away from the game despite the defeat and said the only way to set things right is by winning this Saturday’s game at York, who drew 2-2 with Chesterfield last night.

“The games are coming thick and fast and if we win that (York City) then we are still up where we want to be around. 

“We will take the positives from tonight, which there will be, but ultimately we are here to get results and the result will be a big dark shadow over everything we talk about, but the only way to put that right is by working hard in training and taking into the game and getting a result. 

“That will lift the mood and then we will kick on from there. It’s not all doom and gloom, but obviously we were disappointed to lose last night’s game.”

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