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VIDEO: Yates apologises for 'woeful' first-half display

2 November 2014

Cheltenham Town manager Mark Yates after the 1-0 home defeat by York City:

I’d like to apologise for the first-half performance and I’d like to thank the supporters for even applauding at the end to the players. They have been brilliant this season and they’ve given us their backing all the time and they clapped the players off, but they got a far better effort in the second half. What we did first half was woeful and I was angry watching that game.


We got outplayed and bullied and they could have had a few goals. We’re not kidding ourselves, that first half performance was woeful. We trained on Thursday, working really hard on our back eight and making sure we were right, but it just wasn’t there in the first half.

In the second half we had to change it and try and get something out of it. With better finishing we could have easily won the game. We had two shots in the first half and 16 in the second, Terry (Gornell) should be scoring at least one of the good chances that came his way, Byron (Harrison) had a couple and Eusebio caused a them problems.

In the first half we just got bullied by not even a team of bullies, we just got out-fought, our passing was really poor and we let their centre forwards get hold of it. Our clearances were poor and they were coming straight back at us. We gave away three or four fouls and Tayls (Jason Taylor) was lucky to get away with what he did to Russ Penn in front of the dugout.

We changed the shape and wanted Troy Brown to play in midfield in a 4-1-3-2, but he gave the ball away in the right-back spot and they scored. It’s a complete lack of understanding of what we were trying to do in that first half.

It’s not about tactics or formations, it’s about a bit of desire and that’s the only time I’ve questioned their desire this season. They produced something better second half if you add it all up, we had chances to win the game, but we got what we deserved really.

Russ Penn was playing Joe Hanks, getting him booked for a silly challenge, which I didn’t think it was a booking. We all know what Russ used to do for us get us, getting fouls on the edge of the box and the refereee said one more and Hanksy was off, so you tell me whether it was a good decision or not but there was no way I was playing with 10 in the second half.

We had to keep 11 on the pitch to try and get something we talked about at half-time how they concede 40 per cent of their goals in the last 10-15 minutes. We were better in the second half, but we didn’t do enough to get anything out of the game.

Eusebio is a good player I’ve been after him for ages, it’s just fitting him in our system. Luxury player is the wrong word but he’s brilliant with the ball and sometimes you don’t get what you're after without it. He’s a young kid and it’s our job to educate him as well as what Wolves do with him. He’s a precocious talent and he’s got undoubted ability. We didn’t get anything from it and stuff around the edge of the box just came to nothing. He just didn’t have that final touch to make things happen.

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