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Micky Mellon post Coventry City

13 August 2016

Gaffer's thoughts after the draw at Coventry City

Micky Mellon was pleased with the point his side took away from Coventry today, with Town shaping up well after the break having been tested defensively in a first half dominated by the home side: “We’ve come to a tough place like Coventry and got a result and a clean sheet,” said Micky. “First half we had an idea of how we wanted to play but it just wasn’t working and you have to have a Plan B. We wanted to go with a back three after pre-season really and we were ready to go with another system, so in the second half I thought we were miles better. We knocked it around a lot more and made a lot more passes and nobody can say that we didn’t have the best two chances of the match. With those two chances, and especially the one at the end, we can be a little bit disappointed that we didn’t win all three points.”

The one at the end that Mellon was referring to Coventry old boy Jim O’Brien who failed to get the sort of connection on the ball from just two yards out that would have beaten any goalkeeper. “I don’t know what happened there, but the ball came over so slow I think Jim was thinking: ‘that’s it, that’s me scoring the winner against my old club, here it comes, I’m going to score against my old club’... and then he never! He will live that moment all evening now but we’re not blaming anyone – these are the things that sometimes happen in football. Full credit to the lads and the coaching staff for knowing what we were going to do at half-time and they carried it out brilliantly.”

Mellon made two changes at the break and it made for a much more evenly balanced affair in the second 45. With Ollie and Blacky coming on at half-time sometimes it’s hard because they’re playing in a new shape. But they’re very good players and have both played for their country and they fitted in seamlessly. Our movement ahead of the ball was better and we made better angles which we didn’t do in the first-half.”

The Town gaffer said he had been pleased with young Ethan Jones – one of the players replaced at the break which Mellon expanded on: “I think Ethan deserved his chance and we wanted to give him an opportunity to show his power and pace. He’s a very strong boy and worked very hard and the only reason he was taken off was that our shape for the second half wouldn’t have done Ethan justice.”

AJ Leitch Smith was an absentee after picking up a slight hamstring knock in the win over Huddersfield in midweek, but Micky suggested that the forward might yet be on the training pitch come Monday suggesting that the injury isn’t a serious one. Mellon emphasised the importance of having a group of players that can fill in

When pressed on any potential newcomers to the squad, Mellon’s grin quickly widened: “Until players actually sign, it’s pointless speculating. I tell you guys to hold off with stories and don’t run ahead with things too aggressively, and you go and make it into a massive headline. But we’re hoping it will be done on Monday and if it is you will be the first person I tell.”

Shrews face another tough looking assignment on Tuesday night with a trip to London to face relegated Charlton Athletic. Town’s man at the helm expects another difficult game: “This is a really tough place to come to and Charlton will be a different test to the one today. We’ve had them watched and know a lot about them so they will pose a different challenge to today. We’ll pick a side that we think will be up to facing that challenge just like they’ve done today.”

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