Dunfermline Athletic

Manager Post Montrose

Saturday, 22nd Oct 2022

22/10/22:- Link to audio of James McPake’s post match comments


- - Listen to this James McPake Interview

Speaking after just his second defeat as manager of Dunfermline Athletic James McPake started by congratulating Stewart Petrie and their manager Stewart Petrie for their 2-0 victory,

“First and foremost, well done to Montrose. They had a different gameplan to what they came to East End Park with. They came, they knocked the ball about and they were very good that day, it was a very tight game. Today they went a bit more direct and got some joy from it. Credit to Stewart Petrie, he has got the points.

“The difference today was probably that they took that one chance. I discount the second goal because we`re chasing the game and I know that if it`s 0-0 Aaron Comrie boots it right over that stand. Instead of going back to Deniz, he did what I would have done and I would hoped that anybody in my team would have done. Not lose a goal but my point I am making, he is trying to get us back to Deniz to get us back up the pitch to try and get an equaliser because we were desperate to get back into the game. It didn’t work out but he has been excellent for us.

“They are a team like us that doesn’t concede many so the first goal was going to be really crucial. We had a few chances but they have a good goalkeeper on loan from St Johnstone and I like him. Deniz had a good save at the end as well but I didn`t think there was that much in the game, it was a bit scrappy at times. When we did get the ball down and play, played through the middle third, we looked pretty good and we created a couple of chances.

"I`m gutted for the players because I see they`re reaction and how down they are and how sad they are that they`ve lost a game. But I`m also very proud of this run that they`ve gone on. That`s down to the players.

“If I’m right in saying it because somebody sent me it, last week’s win equalled the number of league wins that we had all last season. We are in October so if that’s the case it doesn’t matter what league that you are in, you have to win games.

“This is a competitive league and if that’s the case then that just shows you how quick those players have shifted their midset from being a team that had lost most of their games to being a team that believes that now believes that they can win every game that they can play in. Looking at it at the start we didn`t think we could turn it around as quick. We`re delighted we have and there is still a lot of work to be done.

“We know that and that’s why I say it every week. We are still new in the door but everything that we are asking the players to do and everything that we are asking them to buy into - it doesn’t always work. Like today, we maybe didn’t play so free flowing as we did at Hamilton (v Clyde) the other night.

“The pitch at Hamilton was a bit slicker and the ball moved a bit better. I’m not having a go at the pitch, I’m not making excuses but that was just how it was. I thought that we were excellent on Tuesday night in the way we moved the ball and on the eye.

“There were certain parts of this game, and I know when I watch it back I will see that as well - you normally come out and you are really harsh but go back and see that we weren’t that bad. When you win 1-0 you think that you were lucky to win that and then you go and watch it, like the FC Edinburgh game I’d say. We were very dominant and if we hadn’t won it (that would have been wrong).

“I have mixed feelings. I’m gutted for the players. For myself it is get back on the horse and go again. I can’t wait until the next game now. I’m loving it here, I’m loving the way the boys are working, the support from the fans and when you put that into context and they are driving down the road, I’m devastated that they are driving having tasted defeat for the first time in a while in what is our main competition, the League.

“The ones who were up at Ross County maybe felt that but those fans driving down the road will be devastated. It is the first time that they had that this season so I apologise for that. I feel gutted about that because as a coach or as a manager or a player you want to send the fans home happy because then you know that you are getting the applause.

“I have mixed feelings. I’m gutted for the players. For myself it is get back on the horse and go again. I can’t wait until the next game now. I’m loving it here, I’m loving the way the boys are working, the support from the fans and when you put that into context and they are driving down the road, I’m devastated that they are driving having tasted defeat for the first time in a while in what is our main competition, the League.

“The ones who were up at Ross County maybe felt that but those fans driving down the road will be devastated. It is the first time that they had that this season so I apologise for that. I feel gutted about that because as a coach or as a manager or a player you want to send the fans home happy because then you know that you are getting the applause.

“They applauded us off the players off the pitch at the end which for me is very pleasing. When you go back and put that into context the twelve game run, a full set of fixtures plus we have played Montrose twice, Edinburgh twice and we have only lost one game.

“Now if somebody had told me the day I walked in the building that would be the club’s record after the first twelve league games I think I would have knocked the job back and said ‘I am not believing that because it is not easy to do that’.

“I have been on the other side of it where I have not won in ten, so I know what I like. It is sad but there are more important things and we forget about it quickly. Like I said on Tuesday night, enjoy it for an hour. Unfortunately this hurts you for a wee bit more than an hour and you don’t sleep at night.

“Look I have three young daughters, I will go home and see them. I can’t wait and thankfully they don’t judge me. The players have got family, girlfriends, wives and kids so that’s a time you go and spend it with them. Then they will maybe look back and say ‘we started quite well’ but it’s just a start, there is loads more to come from us.

“We need to get back to work and we will work hard next week because we have another tough game (v Kelty Hearts) coming up. A defeat was going to come at some point, it has come and it is now how do we bounce back. I believe that there is a lot of character in there and I’m super proud of the ways that bunch of lads have started the season particularly after what happened last season.”



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