Danny Cowley was in a more reflective mood following his passionate post-match conference relating to the match against Carlisle, ahead of Saturday’s Sky Bet League Two match against Colchester United.
Water Gate: Danny Cowley made no apologies for having high standards and hated drawing let alone losing; he was still bitterly disappointed with the midweek result due to that also he was frustrated at the fans not being given the best product available. DC is never satisfied and always strives for more which is why he was so obviously annoyed. Albeit the truth about the circumstances was not good for everyone he felt it needed to be said. Human mistakes happen and an investigation had been carried out so the process has now been put right. DC expanded on his point about small percentage gains outlining that last season the pitch situation would have been less problematic but Imps game has evolved and now relies on fast purposeful movement of the ball through the thirds. Having planned and trained for that all week it probably made a 20% detrimental swing all the more annoying as it was giving up home advantage with Carlisle relying on a more direct counter approach that was less affected by pitch condition. DC concluded the pitch was only a contributory factor with the defending being nowhere near the standard expected.
Defending: DC does not like conceding two goals in a game and Imps have done that twice recently. The style of play is such that importance is placed on a counter press and turn over if Imps lose possession. If that cannot be done then the team has to find ways to slow down the opposition with the ball. In light of recent goals conceded that process will be re-visited to ensure ‘we’ get back to defending as a team with a low-risk strategy around Imp’s goal areas.
Psychological Mindset: DC targets player recruitment that identifies players with the same innate will to win that he holds. Training exercises are developed to challenge that attitude, reinforce the winning mentality and ultimately build on it. There is no pressure or fear of expectation from playing in front of large crowds because that is what the club have worked to engender and it should be embraced. It is about giving the players the best chance (through training) to overcome whatever approach the opposition take at SB which is entirely their prerogative. Up until Tuesday, the Imps had not dropped a single point at home whilst they retained 11 players on the pitch so the home record has been successful.
Colchester: They are a much better team than last season. They have a good club model with a new stadium and excellent training facilities. The Chairman has a vision backed up by a good coach. The ‘U’s’ are benefitting from a prosperous youth academy with 3 or 4 of their squad likely to go onto be Championship quality players. This season they have invested additionally by signing two top players each costing a six-figure sum. Colchester can be expected to deploy two or three formations but likely retain the same playing style throughout. DC expects Colchester to be pushing for automatic promotion.
Shay McCartan: Shay is an excellent player with the potential to play at Championship level. He had a good 25 minutes but after the team stopped getting the ball into him his game suffered from him having to go look for the ball. All said, Shay is still learning to utilise his undoubted strengths. Whilst Shay is here on a season-long loan there is a small window whereby Bradford can recall the player but DC highlighted that Imps have a good relationship with Bradford and he remains in contact with The Bantams regarding Shay’s situation.
Neil Eardley: Hopefully getting Neil off quickly nipped the damage in the bud. He may train on the grass tomorrow. He is a key player so naturally, a miss when he doesn’t play but in James Wilson Imps have a versatile player with great athleticism who can play in a number of positions. James has been unlucky with the change from three at the back compounded by the excellent partnership forged between Bossie/Shackell. DC has the utmost confidence in Wilson.
Subs Bench: Only six on the bench v Carlisle due to league rules which insist that club developed players must have been with the clubs for a full year to qualify. Paradoxically that rule meant that rather than having two youngsters benefitting from being on the bench they were ineligible. Crookes missed out as he was the 6th loan player – only five allowed in the matchday squad.
— Vital Lincoln City (@VitalLincoln) October 26, 2018