22nd Nov, 2018

'We took too many chances', Mark Robins reflects on Crawley stalemate

FOOTBALL: MARK Robins blamed a sluggish start to Saturday’s game against Crawley the reason for his side being held to a frustrating 1-1 draw.

Despite the draw, the Sky Blues remain in the playoff frame having secured 32 points from their opening 20 games.

Table topping Luton Town sit nine points ahead of Coventry, as do Notts County, while Accrington Stanley (37), Exeter City (36), and Wycombe Wanderers (33) are the only other teams ahead of Robins’ side.

A first half strike from Jordan Roberts put Crawley ahead before Marc McNulty rifled a close range shot into the top corner to level the game.

And Robins suggested Saturday’s Ricoh clash proved a game of two halves.

He said: “They managed to put the first attack they had in the net which was disappointing.

“The second half was a completely different game. We started to create things and then grew in confidence.

“We took too many chances at times and ended up going direct.

“There were some good balls into the area and across the box that could’ve gave us the win.”

A 3-4-3 formation at the start of Saturday’s game was quickly switched to a more familiar system when Ben Stevenson was brought on at half time.

Robins said: “We have to try and do something.

“We have the personnel to play that system but we need time to work on it, and after today we need to work on it a lot more.

“There are positives, though.

“It was a great finish from McNulty. That goal will do his confidence the world of good.

“I think he is reluctant to count any goals that go in off his backside or ones that he just taps in, when he should because he is a really good striker. He is just starting to get going now.”

The Crawley clash was the first time this season that Robins hasn’t had the option of fielding Jodi Jones.

And the manager said his side must come to terms with his absence.

“Missing Jodi Jones is a big thing but we have to come to terms with it,” said Robins.

“And it isn’t just him it’s Liam (Kelly) too.

“There are various things we can do and we were more fluid during that second half, but this team can be a lot better.”

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