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Sampson: 'We have to be better'

9 December 2019

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Mark Sampson says that although we have become a team harder to beat, we must start turning draws into wins…

Boro came away from Saturday’s game against Crawley Town viewing it as a missed opportunity to pick up all three points, with neither side able to break the deadlock.

“We are disappointed with today," Sampson said. "The level of performance was not where we need it to be. We obviously have not been at home for a while. We wanted to come home and show the level of performance we have been putting in away from home, but we did not do it.”

“We were not good enough, it is as simple as that. The standards we want, the standards we expect, that is not the level we need to be at. We have made it very clear now that, as a group, we have to be better than that at home. People cannot come here and feel like they are in the game.”

“We have got to be more aggressive, more front-foot. We have got to create more chances, got to do better with our final passes. We have got to defend and have more intensity in our game. Big learnings today, but we have got to be better than the levels shown today, that is for sure."

After a good start to the game with fast-paced and attacking football, Stevenage's lack of cutting edge in the final third was the difference on missing out on picking up three points.

“We started well. We had a lot of the ball, got the ball in good areas. I said to the forward guys, “ultimately, you gave got to do better”. We have got to do better with final passes. I am not sure we put a cross in today that said, “go and finish me off”. That is not good enough.”

“We have got good enough players, with quality in our changing room from wide right or wide left or in behind the strikers, to put balls in for our strikers to put the onus on them to finish it. We did not do that enough today. Got in good areas to do it, good crossing positions, good final ball positions, even good shooting areas if we had some quick feet. But we just were not effective and efficient enough in those areas of the pitch today.”

However, down the other end of the pitch, there are some postives.

“We are a very resolute and solid team now defensively. That is the number of clean sheets. There were some moments on the counter attack, we looked in control defensively in the main.”

“We have got to do better, we know that. There will be some hard work put in this week to make sure we are better, to protect a good away record next week.”

“There are positives in terms of clean sheets, another clean sheet and Morecambe chucked into that as well. We have to be better in that final third, simple as that. We have got some players coming back, and we have got a January window now. The onus is on us now to be better. We have to be better.”

As we enter the Christmas period, Mark Sampson sends a message to the fans ahead of a crucial run of games. 

“We are as disappointed as they are. We want to be winning more games. I can sit here and talk about our form and our run of limited defeats in that period of time, but we all know that we have got to get some wins on the board. We have got to turn these performances where they are draws into wins.”

“I have said to the players that there is no reason why we should not have come away with nine points from Scunthorpe, Walsall and today. we could have easily found a way to get nine points out of those games rather than the three. That is our challenge. We have got to make those games that we are in, we are solid, we have got to turn them one points into three points. That is the next level for us.”

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