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Interviews

Hill post-Mansfield (H)

9 April 2022

First team manager Keith Hill provided his reaction to iFollow Iron after the Iron were beaten 4-0 at home by Mansfield Town on Saturday.

He started by saying: “It was very very frustrating. I’m disappointed with the manner in which we conceded the goals. 

“We started the game brightly and were on the front foot. We know they’re an excellent side, a possession-based side and we know they invade the centre of the pitch, but we just didn’t deal with it. 

“As a consequence, the mistakes we make for the goals. In the first corner there’s a catalogue of mistakes which leads to a goal but just prior to that they had a free header at the back post.

“What I will say about the players is that they never hid or gave up. They continued to try, continued to work hard, in and out of possession and I hope they learn from these bad experiences and results because it can really affect you and it affects me. 

“I try and put the stick-on smile on because I’m trying to encourage the young players. You’ve got to look at Liam Feeney, he’s constantly doing everything he can to make sure he’s supporting the young players and supporting us in our quest to try and do better.

“There’s a disappointment but almost a predictable feeling/outcome - a predictability of what I need to say to you (iFollow Iron) and the players but ultimately the mistakes we made mean we aren’t going to win football matches."

“Even though we were competitive, and we were honest, we weren’t good enough,” he finished.

“They’re an elite opposition,” stated Hill about promotion pushing Mansfield Town.

“They’ve recruited superbly well with the budget they’ve got and they probably deserve to get promoted because of the way they play and the experience they’ve got."

“It’s something for us to strive to be individually and collectively,” he finished.

Hill also revealed that defender Luke Matheson was set to start this afternoon but missed out due to illness. 

“Today, once again, I’ve been given the opportunity to give young players an opportunity and I hope they learn from it," he said.

“Prior to the game we had an illness with Luke, so we had to change around about 11am. He’d been sick all night and so Fin (Shrimpton) came in. 

“I said to Fin, ‘I do hope you learn from the experience; you were brilliant in training and really good midweek (against Gainsborough Trinity) and previously against Burnley behind closed doors’ so I hope he learns from that experience and then develops."

Speaking on the recall of Shrimpton from Cleethorpes Town and subsequent EFL debut, Hill said: “It’s not just a reward, he’s worked hard on the training pitch and I want to reward players for working hard.

“He wasn’t due to start, he was due to be on the bench and to have a slow introduction. I thought he competed really well but when you’re playing against a side like Mansfield you really do have to look after the ball and make clean and better decisions."

Hill also introduced fellow youngster Jack Moore-Billam and gave an EFL debut to Ethan Young. Reflecting on their performances, he said: “I believe that Ethan Young when he came on was superb and Jack was superb as well.

“There are small glimpses of progress but the big result is the underachieving and the sense of inevitability which hurts me and hurts the players. For that I can only apologise to the supporters. I really want to give the supporters something back."

Midfielder Harvey Cribb also missed the game this afternoon due to injury, Hill revealed.

“He’s got a little bit of a thigh strain or dead leg, we aren’t quite sure at this moment in time but it was a good time for him to rest and evaluate what he’s done so far," he said.

Hear more from Keith Hill and Liam Feeney on iFollow Iron


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