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Spooner reflects on Blues six appeal

Steve Spooner
Steve Spooner

We needed to tidy up our passing. We had some good examples first-half but we weren’t quite as slick as we were second-half.
We were not as intentional with our passing. We certainly changed that, upped the tempo and created chances - it could have been a lot more.

Steve Spooner

Steve Spooner was delighted with the reaction of Blues Under-18s in their incredible 6-2 victory at Burnley.

Smarting and embarrassed after losing at Colchester United on Saturday – the Us first PDL victory of the season – Blues let rip in the second-half against the Clarets.

Coming back from 2-0 down at half-time, as well, made it all the more pleasing.

George Baker, Adan George and Kane Thompson-Sommers all helped themselves to two goals apiece.

“We got the response but we weren’t so sure at half-time” Spooner joked. “Whilst we felt at 2-0 we were right in the game, it wasn’t as if it was a 2-0 and they were a lot better than us.

“It was just a 2-0 where we had made some silly mistakes. We felt we had controlled most of the first-half but just didn’t threaten enough.

“I felt we were bit slow with the ball in and around midfield, a bit predictable. And we lacked that cutting edge at the top.

“When we did go for it we made wrong decisions and we weren’t quite there.”

The introduction of Rhys Hilton, a change in quickness of deed and thought, plus the input of the coaching staff aided the transformation.

Spooner deliberately stayed in the background for this match, the players well aware how displeased he was with the display in the 4-2- loss at Colchester.

“He was a real outlet in the second-half for us, Rhys,” said Blues Lead Professional Development Coach.

“The fact that we scored two early goals increased the momentum for us and maybe sowed the seeds of doubt in their minds.

“He certainly made a difference and the players looked like they got that self-belief back.

“We needed to tidy up our passing. We had some good examples first-half but we weren’t quite as slick as we were second-half.

“We were not as intentional with our passing. We certainly changed that, upped the tempo and created chances - it could have been a lot more.”

“Also, both James Brayne (Blues Under-11s – Under-12s Cell Lead Coach) and Matt Doyle (Head of Academy Goalkeeping) played a pivotal role in the performance of the players in their guidance and instruction to them before and half-time.

“It was deliberate that I was going to sit back and be more passive in my approach. I was looking into players’ eyes and judging their body language before and after. It was really good the staff had the input they did as well.”

Blues Under-18s face QPR at the Trillion Trophy Training Centre, Wast Hills, on Saturday (12 noon).

“At Colchester, it was very poor and they certainly knew what was expected of them (at Burnley). But that’s what you get with young players.

“They need to go and reproduce that performance again, this Saturday. You don’t always get the result, but we are looking at the level of performance.”

Spooner added: “Against Leeds and Hull, two recent games where we had the potential to do that to teams (win heavily), we didn’t. We haven’t always done it.

“Palace, we were winning 1-0 and ended up having two men sent-off. That cost us.

“The disappointing thing was what that we again leaked bad goals on Tuesday, you can’t do that every week.

“But, credit to them, it was a very good performance from everyone throughout the team.”

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