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Post-Bolton | Paul Hurst

16 April 2024


Post-Bolton | Paul Hurst

16 April 2024

Boss Paul Hurst praised the character of his Shrewsbury side after they put in an impressive display to secure a point at Bolton.

Ahead of the game, Ian Evatt's men had the joint-best home record in League One.

But to a man, Town's players were excellent in Greater Manchester with outstanding goals from Dan Udoh and Jordan Shipley seeing us come away with a thoroughly deserved point.

Speaking to the assembled media, Paul discussed the performance, the quality of the goals and gave his thoughts on the league table with just two games remaining.

On the performance: 

“I’m delighted with the player’s commitment to what we asked them to do. 

“We knew we were going to have long spells without the ball. 

“They (Bolton) are an excellent team in possession, they cause you lots and lots of problems. 

“But I thought the way that we set up – that's one thing – but the players have to carry that out. 

“But at the same time, certainly in the first half, I thought we also carried a threat. 

“We caused them problems, we caused a bit of anxiety in the stadium which – again – is what we spoke about. 

“Overall, I am delighted. Although we were ahead twice, it would be a little bit greedy to not be pleased with a point.” 

On the quality of the goals: 

“We spoke about certain things. The set-play, from a personal point of view, I always enjoy them because it’s something we have identified and looked at. 

“It still takes fantastic technique don’t get me wrong, it was a great ball from Benno (Elliott Bennett) and then Shipz (Jordan Shipley) caught it a treat. 

“It helps when you have got a nice pitch and it doesn’t take an awkward bobble or bounce. 

“With Dan, again he gets in those areas and it’s a lovely finish. 

“We did get in and around the edge of their box quite a bit. 

“We had another few efforts, one in particular Chey’s header from a free-kick which, on another day, maybe goes either side of the goalkeeper. 

“And then second half, Jordan had another great chance when he put it over the bar. 

“They obviously had pressure. But I’m not sure how many – not taking anything away from Marko – how many great saves he made. 

“Morgan Feeney stayed alive and cleared one off the line. 

“It was night and day from the performance on Saturday (against Wycombe) and the performance tonight.” 

On playing a 3-5-2 formation: 

“I felt with Ando (Joe Anderson) coming in – who was excellent by the way. 

“Elliott Bennett just mentioned that in the dressing room, and I would have said it myself if not. 

“That was a reward for how he has continued to train despite hardly getting a look in. 

“Tonight, I thought he defended really well. He played some excellent balls into good spaces for people to run onto. 

“He can be really pleased with his night's work. 

“But bringing him in, I wasn’t absolutely comfortable in terms of a back four with Chey and another. 

“And also we had looked at a lot of the teams that had got results against Bolton, and a lot of them had played a three. 

“I think doing that and playing with two centre-forwards and two holding midfielders with their two eights – the wing-backs matched up. 

“All of a sudden their spare man is one of the centre-backs. And while they are comfortable on the ball, they are a long way from our goal. 

“We also felt with the two up front, maybe when we did clear a ball, that we had a little bit more chance of putting them under pressure or holding it. 

“It’s easy stood here now saying it worked. But again the players have to make it work and sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn’t. 

“I think as long as there is a clear plan and thought process behind what you try to do – then you have to be comfortable with that and hope it does work.” 

On results elsewhere and the table: 

“I think the Cheltenham/Burton one was a hard one in terms of I’m not entirely sure what I wanted. 

“I know some people felt Burton to make it harder for Cheltenham. But they have got some difficult games still. 

“Cambridge, I think they will be fine but they are still involved at this moment in time with a difficult game against Derby thrown in there. 

“There is an element of us taking care of ourselves and a point tonight is a great result. 

“But we want to try now and go to Charlton and take care of our business so then it is over. 

“I think I’m right in saying if we don’t get anything then we still don’t know our fate because Cheltenham play twice in the last week."

On one last push: 

“It’s not done yet. 

“Tonight will take a lot out of the players – you can see that. 

“I think from an obvious physical point of view but also from a mental point of view. 

“But I said in there, that is how they should be feeling after near-enough every game. 

“You might get the odd one where you see our a game comfortably. 

“But against a team like Bolton who have the ball and are probing all the time, it is a case of concentration as well as the physical output. 

“We are going to have to recover. We travel on Friday to Charlton and we will face a team that hasn’t played midweek and also a team that are on a long, unbeaten, run. 

“Nathan (Jones) has gone in there – and while they have drawn quite a few games in that – it shows the difference. 

“They are one of the teams that at the start of the season would have expected to be a lot higher up the league.” 


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