United secured a second round tie against Nigel Adkins’ Reading at Glanford Park with a win against Blackburn on Tuesday evening.Neal Bishop netted the only goal of the game, his first for the club since joining in the summer.
It turned out to be enough to give United the win in a good all-round display, particularly, as Bishop says, following Saturday’s result at Swindon.
He told The Iron Player: “I think it was important following Saturday. It was good to get a game tonight. You can ponder on things a bit too much and overthink Saturday. We’ve come back out and it’s a great response.
“We were more organised with a better shape about us and to keep a clean sheet after conceding three on Saturday is vitally important for the confidence levels.
“Now, it’s all about taking that performance and that discipline into Preston this weekend.
“First half, we were the better team and played the better football and deservedly got the goal. We looked dangerous going forward.
“Second half, it’s going to happen. Subconsciously, you do drop a bit deeper when you’re protecting a lead but you can control the game without the ball sometimes.
“We kept the distances from goal very well. Apart from a couple of crosses that they got their heads to, there wasn’t an opportunity where you’d say ‘he should have scored that’.
“It’s a Championship quality team that we’ve beaten with the names and players out there, make no mistake about it.
“It’s pleasing but there’s no time to pat ourselves on the back. It’s the cup and we got off to a disappointing start in the league and that’s where our priorities lie this season.”
On his goal, the central midfielder heaped praise on McSheffrey’s delivery, which had caused trouble for Rovers all evening.
He said: “It was a great ball. All the pace was on it, so all I had to do was get in front of my man and get a little touch on it, which I did and fortunately it went in the far corner. I’m just glad the goal helped the team and the game.”
On last Saturday’s result, there was an air of disappointment, as is perhaps inevitable. Bishop saw it as an opportunity to learn, letting the work in training and on the field do the talking as opposed to over-analysing what was only the first competitive outing this season. The former Notts County and Blackpool man was pleased to see that the squad had learned from their foibles from Swindon, with Preston in the league to follow Blackburn on Saturday at Glanford Park.
“You can talk things to death sometimes and you go out on the pitch and it’s all forgotten. You get into bad habits and don’t do anything about it," he stated.
“There are a lot of games this month and we didn’t have time to sit and feel sorry for ourselves. We need to be quick learners and I think we’ve proved tonight we are.
“There’s enough experience around the group to not let Saturday happen again. We won’t be casual enough to chalk it down to a one-off because we need to be on our mettle every game.
“It was disappointing but we took positives and looked at the negatives. We need to get off the mark in the league with two home games coming up. So all our attentions are on Preston.”
See much more from Neal Bishop, and others, on The Iron Player.