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A game we should have won

Posted: Fri 14 Mar 2014
Author: rovers.co.uk
Eric Kinder

Eric Kinder

Image by: Getty Images

Eric Kinder was left wondering quite how Rovers only came away from Liverpool on Friday evening with a point after a 1-1 draw.

Had Rovers lead 5-0 at the break it wouldn't have been harsh as Rovers struck the woodwork three times whilst Liverpool goalkeeper Yusuf Mersin made several excellent saves.

Dean Rittenberg's 41st minute penalty was all Rovers had to show for their dominance, and it would prove costly as Ryan Edwards could only divert Brad Smith's centre into the back of his own net soon after the restart.

Without Dickson Etuhu and Joshua King in the second half, who both came through 45 minutes on their return to action, Rovers were never quite the same, but they still could have won the match when Will Beesley fired wide with the goal at his mercy.

"As silly as it sounds it was just like the performance at Fulham where the scoreline was cruel on us," said Kinder.

"Tonight we created the chances, but we just couldn't convert them. It wouldn't have looked out of place if we'd have been five or six goals up at the break. At half-time we were so frustrated that it was only 1-0."

Kinder was delighted with the performance of senior pros Etuhu and King, and revealed the plan was always to give them 45 minutes.

"Dickson and King were only ever going to play first half," explained the coach. "But they were a credit to the club for the way they went about the game.

"Their composure and experience was there for all to see, and it will have been great for our young lads to play alongside them."

For Kinder, the point at Liverpool is another step on the road to improvement that he is seeing with the Under-21s. 

The development squad have struggled this season, but in recent weeks they've drawn against Tottenham, defeated Newcastle United and pushed league leaders Fulham hard, before Friday's point against Liverpool.

"We are absolutely delighted with the way things have gone over the last six weeks," added Kinder. "There are signs that next season we'll have a really good group of lads.

"It has been a hard season but we are starting to see the rewards now.

"It will be a young group next season, and it will be fascinating watching them develop. I said to them that they could play together for four or five years and beyond.

"I'm excited by the prospect of watching the progress."

The Under-21s are next in action on Monday 24th March when they take on Manchester City at Leigh Sports Village. Season ticket holders can gain free admission on production of their season ticket cards. General admission prices are £4 Adults, £2 Concessions.