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Cox post-Stevenage (H)

8 May 2021

First team manager Neil Cox provided his reaction to iFollow Iron after his side lost 1-0 at home to Stevenage in the final game of the season.

Losing out to an Elliott List goal on 59 minutes, Cox said: “I feel the same as after many games this season, frustrated at getting beaten 1-0 again, from another set play. People don’t want to mark in the box and it frustrates me. We didn't have that edge or quality to get back into the game.

“In the first-half there was nothing in the game, with half chances for both sides, and we both lacked a little bit of quality in the final third. We came out for the second half, after talking about what we needed to do, but we didn’t get started and they came out on top.”

He added: “Our performance today is us all over, we get in some good areas but lack quality and belief to get it across to the people in the box. That’s just been us all season. That’s the reason why we’ve lost so many games in this manner. We haven’t been good enough in both boxes.”

Talking about central defender George Taft coming off at half time, he commented: “George has got a bad neck and felt it in the warm-up but carried on. We just had to protect him in the last game of the season so he came off. He’s a big part of next season for us so we just took him off.”

In the final game of the season, younger members of the squad like academy products Tom Pugh and Harry Jessop got further game time from the bench, and Cox said: “It was good to see Pughy, he’s worked hard all season and that’s why he’s got his opportunity. He’s showed a lot of the other youngsters how it should be done and if you work hard, you’ll get an opportunity. He needs to come in fresh, stronger and fitter in the summer and try to get a place in my first team.”

Discussing why goalkeeper Rory Watson wasn’t involved today, he said: “Rory had a back spasm on Tuesday, that’s all it was and with back spasms it takes four or five days to settle down."

Looking ahead to next season, Cox concluded: “I’m looking forward to it, I’ll bring all the players in on Monday and have a chat with them. I’ll meet individually with all the players and then speak to the ones who are going to be here and sit down and tell them how we’re going to start, what fitness expectations are and how we’re going to play. There will be new faces and we’re going to go forward.”

See much more from Neil Cox on iFollow Iron.

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