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Post Exeter | Matt Taylor

28 November 2023


Post Exeter | Matt Taylor

28 November 2023

Boss Matt Taylor chatted to the media after watching his Shrewsbury side earn a point at Exeter.

Town travelled to St James Park with a staggering 10 players in the treatment room with Tom Flanagan, Morgan Feeney and Taylor Perry all picking up knocks during the win over Port Vale.

Things then got even worse for Salop when Elliott Bennett had to come off midway through the first half in Devon with a nasty cut on his ankle.

Despite the large number of absentees, though, Taylor's men went on to put in a battling performance and had good chances to win it with Dan Udoh and Max Mata both going close. 

Then towards the end, goalkeeper Vil Sinisalo made an outstanding save to deny Udoh once again.

Speaking to the assembled media, Matt discussed the game, our lengthy injury list and what the players will do to recover - with Town back in action in 72 hours when they travel to face Notts County in the FA Cup.

On the point: 

“It was hard-earned. We spoke about the result on Saturday – that was hard-earned.  

“We’ve come here tonight with 10 first-team players left at the training ground because they are injured. 

“None of them look as if they are coming back imminently.  

“We have picked up another injury tonight with Elliott Bennett. He has got a deep cut, a laceration, to his foot, to his ankle. 

“So everything that can go against us, is going against us. 

“But that group of men out there tonight, they battled, they harried, and they did brilliantly. I can’t have any complaints. 

“I’ve just said to the players in there, we will go with that every week. That is the minimum requirement. 

“I’m very happy stood here now with the clean sheet away from home. In our last away game we got beat 4-0. 

“What they did tonight – they dug in. And we probably should have won the game, we had the better chances. 

“Dan Udoh had two really good chances. Their keeper made an unbelievable save at the end. 

“They have hit the woodwork from a free-kick but other than that I don’t remember Marko having to make a save. 

“Aaron Pierre has come in and he did really well. Aaron hasn’t played much football, it was his first, competitive, 95 minutes in the league for a long time. 

“Tunmise, that is the best he has played. He was excellent. He had a difficult evening tonight up against (Yanick) Wildschut – he's a really good player. 

“I’m really pleased with the result tonight albeit it’s a draw. I would have liked all three points. 

“But the players are out on their feet in there. We don’t have huge reserves of players right now. 

“The group as it stands is the group we are going with.

"But if they keep giving effort like that and determination – that block-shot mentality – and then in those big moments when we had them tonight their keeper stepped up and made some really good saves.” 

On our chances: 

“We had some good chances. 

“That’s where we talk constantly to the players about transitions, transitions are a huge part of football. 

“Whether that’s defence to attack or attack to defence. 

“We looked solid behind the ball. 

“It was a slightly different game plan we had. It had to be because of the personnel we had in the squad. 

“We wanted the players to be competitive. We knew that coming here tonight against Exeter - and the result they had at the weekend - their tails would be up. 

“And we have dug in and got a really good point on the road.  

“Would I have liked three? Yes. But the way our players have battled for the shirt, for the club, for the team and for each other – I'm exceptionally happy with that. 

“And you can see the appreciation of the supporters that have travelled a long way on a Tuesday night and I thank each and every one of them for coming. 

“The players went over to see them and they were being applauded off so that tells you what they thought. 

“I’m really pleased with the night’s work. It’s now about recovering. We are staying in Exeter tonight. 

“The players will have a recovery session tomorrow in the pool. There won’t be a training session. 

“And then we will travel back to Shrewsbury and we will prepare on Thursday for another game on Friday.” 

On what he was thinking when Elliott Bennett came off injured: 

“I can’t repeat what I was thinking to be perfectly honest with you. 

“It’s the way things are going for us at the moment. 

“But I’m not standing here using it as an excuse. I’m standing here telling you the truth.  

“The players we have available in the squad at the moment, and this goes down to all the young players, were exceptional tonight both with and without the ball. 

“Nohan covers a huge amount of ground. Carl Winchester – you can go through the whole team. 

“I was really pleased with the battle, the fight and the desire from my team tonight. I can’t ask anymore. And I’ll be asking exactly the same in 72 hours from now.” 

On whether any of the injured players will be available for Notts County:  

“Potentially, yes, if they are available, they might not be fully fit. But that’s the position we’re in at the moment.   

“I’d love all the players to be 95% fit, but we might have to look at relying on players in the squad that aren’t 100% fit, but you know as I’ve said I’ll happily go with that.   

“The injuries that we’ve had have been freakish, we’ve got to get people out of the treatment room, we’ve got to get more players.  

“But in saying that, and I’ll say it again, I will take that effort, desire and determination and the willingness to defend our goal.  

“This isn’t an easy place to come by the way, we did the right thing, we spoke about it in the week about making sure that if we won the toss, we’d turn them around because I feel their home end is a difficult end to defend.  

“First half we did that really well, and then second half we had some opportunities on the break, but I felt comfortable tonight and I’ve not said that too often.” 


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