Crewe Boss Steve Holland On The Match

Last updated : 19 January 2008 By Thetashkentterror

Steve Holland
Alex' first team coach Steve Holland spoke to BBC Radio Stoke after his side's 1-0 defeat at Brunton Park this afternoon, Holland suggesting that the wind was a big factor in Carlisle's first-half dominance :

" We are having to take things on the chin a bit at the moment. They were difficult conditions, particularly in the first-half, they played with a strong wind that actually disappeared at half-time. So we were probably in our own half more than they were in their half mainly because of the wind. They played very direct in the first-half and got the ball forward.

" We were finding it hard to build up off our forwards which is a problem we are well aware of. There weren't I didn't think a great deal of clear-cut chances, they had had some shouts from outside the box. We hadn't particularly threatened, Nicky (Maynard) had half a chance about halfway through the half so at 0-0 at half-time I really said to the players that it was one of those days that it wasn't going to be a vintage football performance.

" It was one where you've got to dog out the defending, make no mistakes and just whether we could just produce a little movement somewhere. If the front players can combine and take a chance or a set-play. The second-half started and I could see the goal coming, we were making too many mistakes, George (Abbey) I didn't think did very well for their goal. I didn't think that he was close enough to his man quickly enough.

" It invited the winger to hit a ball easily into our box, I'd have to see that again but that was certainly my opinion of it watching the game live. If that was the case then that is what we were talking about at half-time that we had to avoid to get points from these games. The cross came in, I think the first striker did a little over and the second striker just literally toe-poked it, beat Julien (Baudet) to it by inches and the ball was in the bottom corner.

" I actually felt at that stage then that it would be a real test for our players but to be fair they did actually respond well from the setback of the goal. For the majority of the rest of the game I actually thought we had sprung to life.

" He (Simon Church) was injured after a minute, he tried gamely to carry on but couldn't so that is the way it is going for us a bit at the moment. We lost Mark (Carrington) this morning ill but in the second-half after we conceded I actually thought we'd get an equaliser. Shaun (Miller) did spring to life, Byron (Moore) looked the most likely I thought against (Zigor) Aranalde, he was having a real headache trying to cope with him. "

" Nicky nearly got in to receive a ball in behind where he would have been in had he receive it. Byron got a good shot that the goalkeeper saved and then Nicky couldn't quite just adjust his feet in the box there. I think that was from a corner where it looked like a tap-in at the back-post which would have been just rewards for their effort I thought in the end.

" I don't know what else to say other than what I have said, I've said the same thing to the players that I am not going to criticise them other than keep highlighting their mistakes. If I can improve on the players that are making the mistakes next game then I will but there is certainly nothing wrong with the spirit. A break would certainly help at this stage, just to help us get a result that would hopefully kick us on a little bit.

" It's about ten or eleven weeks I think since he (Steven Schumacher) last played, he got through an hour in a reserve game in the week. We were going to try to get him another reserve game this week but obviously with the problem that we had with Mark this morning he has had to play. I didn't have a great deal of options on the bench in midfield, he was really the last midfield player we've got that was available. I think that he has done very well to get through the 90 minutes like he did, and not only that but not in a position that he would ideally like to play in.

" It's very important to get support for the first-team games, it's certainly a two man job anyway. So for us not to have Neil (Baker) here particularly there needs to be a very good reason and hopefully there will be. Neil, Glyn (Chamberlain) and Dario (Gradi) are all not just watching players but watching really specific targets that hopefully we can make some progress on sooner rather than later.

" Gary (Roberts) was left out for disciplinary reasons, if he manages to attend training tomorrow which is something that he hasn't managed to do twice in the last week then he will be available for selection for Tuesday. It's frustrating because he has actually been doing well on the pitch but you need to attend training don't you I would have thought. "