January 4, 2015
When any suitable match reports from the Nuneaton Town perspective become available they will be posted on here.
( This report is adapted from the Coventry Telegraph with thanks. )
High-flyers too strong for Boro after defensive slip leaves home side with a mountain to climb.
Title hopefuls Bristol Rovers took the points back to the West Country but their win left Nuneaton manager Liam Daish unhappy with his own side’s performance.
Matty Taylor scored just before half-time with Nathan Blissett doubling the lead with a header early in the second period. And it was the crucial second goal that infuriated the Boro boss.
Daish said: “It was one of those games where you need to defend well but I was disappointed that within two minutes of the start of the second half we concede to someone who is 6ft3in and sticks out like a sore thumb.
“He should have been picked up but it’s been happening all season so why should we start doing it now? You’d like to think that we have learnt our lesson but we haven’t.
“You need to produce a little bit of creativeness and quality and I think that was the difference. I thought we matched them on effort but things have to be done quicker and earlier and with quality. We take too long to decide what we are going to do and the moment is long.
“We are then hitting floaty hopeful balls – and that’s the sort of ball I would want to defend at my age. When the moment is lost, it’s easier to defend.”
Rovers dominated the chances in the first half but failed to make them count. Dean blocked efforts from Taylor and Blissett and the tall striker was also off target with a header.
Keeper Christian Dibble also did well to keep out a Taylor effort and he was unlucky with Bristol’s opening goal on 40 minutes. A ball in from the right found Blissett whose close-range effort was well-saved by the Boro keeper only for Taylor to force the rebound over the line.
Daish said: “I’m glad to see Christian back. Young Callum Burton did well when he was with us over Christmas but we now have Christian back. It was a tough game for him to come into – Bristol Rovers will be there right to the end.”
Any hopes of a second-half fightback from Nuneaton were dashed within a few minutes of the restart when Blissett headed in a corner unchallenged.
And it should have been worse for Daish’s side as, midway through the half, Blissett got on the end of a low Andy Monkhouse cross only to stab the ball wide from in front of goal.
Another excellent challenge from Dean denied Taylor as the visitors continued to press while Boro’s only chance of note was a 90th minute effort from striker Michael Gash which was easily gathered by Will Puddy in the visitors goal.
The Nuneaton manager handed the captain’s armband to Theo Streete even though there was a rare place in the starting line-up for regular skipper Dean.
Daish added: “I think Theo has been outstanding for me. I had to make a change by pushing Ryan [Smith] further forward and bringing Gaz Dean back in but Theo has done a good job while Gaz has been suspended so I didn’t want to change it too much.
“I’ll look at it game-by-game but there are bigger issues at this club than who should be team captain.
“We need a few players in but it is going to be difficult because the ones we’re looking for, everyone else is looking for them as well.
“Overall, we need to be a little bit more aggressive with what we do. Things have to be done a little quicker. You have to create chances to score goals – it’s a simple game and that’s how games are won.”
Nuneaton (4-4-2): Dibble; Streete, Cowan, Dean, Franklin; Smith, A Brown, Arnson, Walker; Gash, Sodje. Subs (mot used): Starosta, Quinn, Fowler, Baker-Richardson, Charles.
Bristol (4-4-2): Puddy; Lockyer, McChrystal, Parkes, L Brown; Gosling, Sinclair, Mansell (Clarke 90), Monkhouse; Taylor, Blissett. Subs (not used): Leadbitter, Clarke, Balanta, Harrison, Goldberg.
(Elephants from Sir Robert Fossett’s circus parading along Queen’s Road, Nuneaton. May 5th 1974.)