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Development Squad

Done by a smash and grab

Billy Barr says he felt his side were unfortunate to come away from Leyland with nothing to show for their efforts

7 January 2020

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Billy Barr believes Rovers deserved at least a draw out of the disappointing defeat to Brighton & Hove Albion on Monday night.

Rovers took the lead through a Jack Vale penalty after only two minutes to give the hosts a dream start at the Lancashire FA HQ in Leyland.

But Brighton battled back with a goal in each half through Peter Gwargis and then Danny Cashman, which allowed Simon Rusk's side to take the points back to Sussex.

“It was a smash and grab," he said after the game.

"You look at all the stats, shots, shots on target, corners, final third entries, we were top on them all apart from the one that matters, a 2-1 win to them.

“They did it against Arsenal, they’re good at what they do. From our point of view I thought we were wasteful.

“We had 34 crosses and I can’t really remember us getting on the end of anything. In the second half it felt like they had a couple of breakaways and we have been camped in their half.

“From that point of view, good, but from the other side of it, the creation and patience, decision-making, that’s what I said to them, we need to keep working on, improve, looking at.

“It’s just a disappointment in a game where we had so much of the ball, we should have won," he added.

"We spoke about the start, but then a couple of mistakes for their goals, we were punished for two moments of madness.

"We can’t feel for ourselves, we have another game on Friday that will be equally as hard and see what knocks and bruises we’ve got, go through the video and plan for Friday.”

And ahead of Friday's away test against Wolves, Barr is hopeful that he may welcome a number of injured players back into the fold for Friday's trip.

“Jack Evans has another niggle, he’s had a stop-start season," he said when revealing the current injury situation.

"Louie Annesley is back on the grass. Obviously we lost Dan Butterworth. We could do with them back, but it gives people an opportunity.

“Luke Brennan when he came was a big positive. I watched him against Liverpool for the Under-18s on Saturday and he continued the same way.

“Isaac was good when he came on, so we’ll keep working with them.

“We just wanted them both to play."

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