Tis: “The goal changed the flow”

City boss accepts that tame goal affected approach

Following Exeter City’s 2-0 defeat at Bristol Rovers, Exeter City boss Paul Tisdale admitted that conceding the first goal ended up changing the tide in what had been an evenly-matched game.

Neither team had really grasped the nettle when Ollie Norburn lined up a speculative effort from range, which wriggled through Artur Krysiak’s hands as the stopper tried to collect.  And by taking a fortuitous lead, the Pirates were able to dictate the game a little more and make it hard for City to sink their teeth into the fixture.

“They didn’t deserve the first goal, and that changed everything,” said Tis.  “Goals do change the flow of the game and that one certainly changed the flow.  It’s very hard to recover from such a poorly conceded goal. 

“For the first 20 minutes, both sides were average.  I thought we looked okay – we perhaps didn’t show enough ambition going forward, or didn’t have enough quality in our build-up in those attacking areas, and they showed little ambition either.  

“The goal came out of nothing really – up to that point I was comfortable, because I knew we could pick it up and that we could engineer the game to give ourselves a chance.  But it was a shocking goal to give away and at that point; their resolve intensified and the purpose of their game became very clear for them and our game became muddied.”

The introduction of Jimmy Keohane and Jake Gosling at half-time meant a reshaping of the team and some fresh and dynamic ideas in attack.  Up until the point when Lee Brown rasped home a 25-yard strike late in the game, City had looked more threatening and the addition of the two youngsters had certainly contributed to that potency.

Gosling in particular has only broken into the team for the first time in his fledgling career in recent weeks, so one positive that could be taken from the game was more evidence that City now have another player amongst the ranks that can be used to good effect in the first team.

“Jimmy and Jake both added something to our performance after half-time,” continued Tis.  “We have to hope that the players in and around the squad can add something to the proceedings at this time of the season.  We are making substitutions and I’m putting young boys in – and at the moment, Jake Gosling has shown that he’s good enough.

“He’s still untested, but I’m learning as I see him play about the decisions he’s making, and he’s doing pretty well.  It’s going to be a difficult month and everyone has to contribute, and I have to say Jake contributed when he came on today.”