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Alexander: It is only half time

13 May 2014

Manager's thoughts after first leg victory

Graham Alexander erred on the side of caution by insisting it is only ‘half time in a cup-tie’ after Fleetwood Town’s narrow 1-0 victory over York City in the Play-Off semi final first leg at Bootham Crescent.

Former York winger, Matty Blair, scored the decisive second half winner as he bundled in Sarcevic’s strike across the box, but Town had to remain resilient at the back for long periods to ensure they came away with the first leg advantage.

The victory also ended an unbeaten run of 17 games for the Ministermen and Alexander has called on his players to produce a performance of similar ilk when the teams lock horns again on Friday night at Highbury Stadium.

Speaking to the club’s official website, Alexander said: “We were really pleased with the performance and obviously the result tonight. 

“The clean sheet was very important and it is going to be just as difficult on Friday. 

“We have to do all the things we did tonight and more because York will have to come at us to get back into the tie so we have to make sure we go up against that.

“We have to keep attacking though and try and score goals because that’s when we are at our best. 
“We saw tonight two good sides of our team and it’s going to take that again on Friday to make sure we go through. 

“We took the lead at the start of the second half and we have had a couple more opportunities when we could have scored, but if we were offered a 1-0 before the game, we would have took it. 

“It’s only half time in a cup-tie between two good teams and we need to make sure we produce the same performance again on Friday. 

“You can see the focus inside them, you can see that in training and with not playing on Saturday there was a lot of pent up emotions and aggression and they wanted to play. 

“You could see that in the way they played tonight and if we have to do it all again, we need to prepare right and make sure we are at it on Friday.”

After Saturday’s original fixture was postponed because of the poor weather, Alexander shared his sympathy for the Cod Army fans who could not make it to Bootham Crescent for the rescheduled Monday night game.

Fleetwood’s manager, though, hopes Town’s first leg win has put a ‘smile on their faces’ and insists the players are going to need their support for Friday’s crucial decisive second leg.

“It’s difficult for them to come twice in three days, it’s a big commitment and it was a shame for the other people who couldn’t make it.,” He added.

“It’s difficult on a working night, but hopefully they have watched this at home and have got a smile on their faces. 

“We are going to need their support again on Friday, everyone that comes to Highbury need to be right behind the team like they were tonight, like they have been all season.   

“We knew what we was coming into. It was always going to be a very difficult game against a very good opponent who are in the play-offs on merit. 

“We are glad that we have punctured that good run they are on and we have to do the work again. We are pleased with tonight’s end result, but we have to do it all again.”

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