Manager reflects on victory against CarlisleExeter City turned in a 2-0 victory against Carlisle United at St James Park, and manager Paul Tisdale felt that it was no less than they deserved for a performance in which they controlled great swathes of the game.
The first goal didn’t come until the verge of the hour mark, when Scot Bennett – playing in a forward role – slotted in neatly after a passing interchange with Matt Grimes and Craig Woodman down the left.
James Hamon, starting his fourth straight Sky Bet League 2 game, didn’t have a lot to do throughout but he and the defence kept a shut-out for the first time at the Park so far this season.
That defensive solidity set the base for the Grecians to get their second – a late goal from Matt Grimes – and manager Paul Tisdale was pleased with a professional display that took Exeter up to seventh in the table.
He said: “It was a really good afternoon. We played our game, we were patient and we got what we deserved in the end.
“Our possession was turned into goals and we kept a clean sheet, and the players played really professionally today. It a was a solid, tight performance.
“You’ll get that game at St James Park reasonably often when the away team reduce the space in front of their back four and play a little bit deep, and don’t allow us space to turn on it.
“We have to probe and be patient and the difference today other than against Hartlepool, Luton or Shrewsbury is that we didn’t concede that goal in the first half – which we have done a number of times at home.
“So we took the initiative to play, but we also kept a clean sheet at the back. They had a flurry here or there and they could have easily got a goal on another day, but they didn’t. We kept our composure, saw where the space was, and played into that space in the second half.”
Grimes’ goal – his fifth in Exeter colours and his first from open play – came on the 88-minute mark, after chances had come and gone at either end to grab the game’s second goal.
Paul was particularly pleased with the way that the team used the initiative of being ahead in the game and on the ball to see out the game in a comfortable manner.
“I’m really pleased at one-nil that we didn’t just sit back and boot it away,” he continued. “We sat back, and I know convention says ‘don’t sit back, push up’ – but what we did today is sit back and then passed it through them and kept the ball.
“We took the energy out of their attacks. If they had an attack, we kept it for the next minute or two and eventually we got the second goal.
“At one-nil you never know what’s going to happen – Billy Paynter put two fantastic crosses in that we just about survived at the back post.
“So you never quite know – but it’s nice to get Matt Grimes scoring from open play. We worked it into the box and he put it in the corner. It just had that feel today that we were on top.”