Exeter City under-23s captain Alex Hartridge credited a strong team display as the reason behind the late 1-0 win over Doncaster in the Premier League Trophy on Tuesday night.
Alex was at the centre of the City defence in a game that the Grecians dominated, but had to wait until the 89thminute before Gary Warren’s header broke the deadlock and gave us all three points.
“It was a really good performance, first half we played the right way, didn’t quite get the chances off the back of it but it was a positive performance and we deserved the late winner.
“If we’d nicked a goal early the game would have opened up and we have the players to exploit that, but we have to settle for what we’ve got as we’re delighted to have scored at the end.”
The visiting Doncaster side had won both of their previous games in the tournament 1-0, and provided perhaps the biggest test so far to an Exeter side that had played only once in the tournament so far as the game away in Portsmouth was called off. Alex spoke of his personal pride with his performances.
“I’m delighted with two clean sheets now in the competition, that’s all we can do – it’s our job – we were tested in parts of the game; it can be hard when you’re on top because you have to be alert for those key moments and I think we did that well enough – we covered each other well and the clean sheet says it all.
“We knew Doncaster had played two games already and won them both in different styles, so we knew they were going to be possibly our biggest test so far and they did test us, but we’ve come out of it with three points.”
It was a City side that blended experience with youth, with several of the younger players plying their trade in league football away from St James Park, but coming back together to play in this cup tournament.
“It’s brilliant experience – it’s a step on from U18s football and a bit like the youth cup, so important for our players and there are players out here doing different roles and needing different things from the game. Especially for the young players – we’ve played in it three years running – and it’s good to get competitive football together instead of our loan clubs, and we’ve shown what we can do.”
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