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Development Squad

We made it too easy for West Ham

Damien Johnson was left disappointed by his side following defeat against the Hammers at Ewood Park

27 November 2018

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Damien Johnson was left disappointed by his side as individual errors cost Rovers Under-23s against West Ham United Under-23s at Ewood Park last night.

A mistake from Tyler Magloire led to the visitors taking the lead just a couple of minutes into the Premier League encounter, before Xande Silva's brace put West Ham in command.

Joe Nuttall pulled a goal back from the spot with time running out, but it was a case of too little, too late.

And that left Damien donwnbeat when reflecting on the game post-match.

“I’m disappointed. I just think the goals we conceded, the individual mistakes and errors, there’s not much you can say," the Development Squad chief said.

“We can discuss the final third stuff where we weren’t good enough and we will talk about that, but fundamentally you have to be good at the back and look like we’re solid and have a good base to build from.

“We gave them opportunities through our passing and that’s the disappointing thing. We spoke at half time about keeping the back door shut because we felt we would create chances, because we did get in to good positions in the first half and were let down by the quality of our final cross or our final pass.

“To concede the third one was the killer and overall I’m really disappointed.”

And despite mistakes from playing out at the back, Johnson says his side's style of play will remain the same.

“At this level they’re still learning and it’s important we try and teach them that side of the game. It would be easy for me just to get them to punt it long," he added.

“But it’s about the decisions of when you do it. If they press then they are leaving space somewhere else, and they have to recognise that.

“Our decision making was poor. When we’d had two or three passes we needed to look for the spaces elsewhere and we didn’t do that.

“If they are going to leave them three on three at the back then let’s go and test them. We didn’t do that.”

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