Gaffer's thoughts after the draw at SwindonShrewsbury Town fought for a hard earned point today as they drew 1-1 away at Swindon.
Town conceded early in the second half as a controversial decision saw Aristote Nsiala given a red and the home side handed a penalty – which John Goddard slotted away to give his side a 1-0 lead.
Town equalised in the 80th minute through Mat Sadler who rose highest to head Shaun Whalley’s free kick home, after Swindon’s James Brophy had received his marching orders for a second booking ten minutes earlier.
The draw marks the end of a three game losing run for Paul Hurst’s men and the gaffer spoke to the press after the game.
“You’ve got to give credit to both teams for trying to win the game,” he said.
“It was like a cup game – both teams going backwards and forwards. A little more quality and composure on our side might have got us a win.
“But when you go a man down and a goal down, I would have taken a point at that stage – that’s for sure.”
Toto Nsiala received a straight red from referee Nigel Miller after he adjudged the Congolese defenders challenge to be two-footed and worthy of a sending off.
Hurst said: “For me he wins the ball, I’ve seen the footage back and it’s 100% not two footed. He wins the ball and the other foot is away to the side of him.
“You can see where the ball goes after he’s won it. They might saw he’s out of control, but he doesn’t leave the ground.
“It’s a strong tackle – but these days it seems as though you can’t tackle at all. It felt like an academy game at times – where you’re not allowed to touch anyone. Maybe I’m living in the past, but I thought it was a man’s game.”
For Town it was a much improved performance which saw them dominate for large periods of the game, and when the equaliser came ten minutes from the end it was much deserved.
“When it went ten v 11 it almost had a negative effect on Swindon, like they weren’t sure what to do and we got to grips with things well.
“And when it went ten v ten I thought we shaded it, but Swindon did have a couple of attacks themselves, because the game really opened up.”
“I’m proud of the team in terms of the spirt they showed, the commitment, the effort and that’s what we need.”
The match saw Hurst give debuts to new signings Nsiala, Alex Rodman and Freddie Ladapo, who all joined the club this week.
“I thought Toto did extremely well – he looked comfortable. He can be pleased with the minutes he had on the pitch.
“For Freddie it was a tough role to play, but the willingness to run – we wouldn’t have had that on Monday, today Freddie gave us that and it makes a big difference.
“He was a handful, and he had an effort which was going in until it was deflected over.
“Alex started slowly, but he grew into the game and showed bits of what he can do. He made plenty of runs down the right hand side and when he went up front he did alright for us.”
Joe Riley also made his first start since returning from a long term injury and Hurst paid tribute to the fullback’s performance.
“You wouldn’t have thought he’d been away for so long the way he tracked up and down that right side for us – he really showed what he can do.”
Town now sit just outside the drop zone in 20th, having gone above Bury due to a more positive goal difference.
Next Saturday Town welcome fourth placed Bradford to the Greenhous Meadow.
“It’s a little boost to sit above that line, but we know we’ll have to be at our best next week because we’ve got a tough game at home against one of the high-flyers.”