Tis: “Disappointing to lose a late goal – but probably a fair result”

Manager gives verdict on Oxford draw

Exeter City manager Paul Tisdale felt that a score draw was probably a reasonable reflection on an entertaining game away at Oxford United – but admitted that conceding a late equaliser was a bitter pill to swallow.

City had trailed to Danny Hylton’s 14th goal of the season for the U’s in the first half, before a neat finish from Arron Davies got the teams on terms at half-time.

Alex Nicholls then looked like he had taken all three points for the Grecians as he flicked in from close range with two minutes remaining, but the U’s added more late drama by snatching one back through a good hit by James Roberts.

It meant that two teams that matched up evenly over the course of the afternoon ended up a point better off at the end of the weekend.

“I thought a draw was probably fair, so I don’t decry them a point out of the game,” said Paul.  “It’s disappointing to lose a late goal, but it was a fair result really.

“It’s not always about winning the game in the first half – it’s about whether you see what you need to do to win the game.  I think by half-time we had a fair idea of what we needed to do. 

“Just because we didn’t expand ourselves in the first half and take chances, that doesn’t mean we didn’t do well enough – that’s just the way we played and we did okay.

“I think Oxford would have been very disappointed to have lost the game with that late goal – of course it feels really disappointing to concede a late goal, but it was probably a fair result.  You still feel terrible at the end.”

While the result leaves the Grecians one place further down the Sky Bet League 2 table than at the start of the day, it brings them level on points with the two teams above them – including Bury, who occupy the final play-off place and who host Exeter in a fortnight.

Tis felt that there was still plenty to play for yet with twists and turns yet to come – and that the key to success would be to make sure that City keep being competitive in every fixture for the remainder of the campaign.

“It’s a long season and there are still plenty of games to go,” he continued.  “But if we’re in every single game and we’ve got a chance to win or be part of every game, then we’re going to be reasonably close to it by the end.

“Hopefully we won’t go into too many last 10 minutes of games when we’re out of it.  But there’s a long way to go yet.”