Dunfermline Athletic

Manager post Arbroath

Thursday, 8th Dec 2022

09/12/22: Link to audio of James McPake`s post match comments

- - Listen to this James McPake interview

The victorious Dunfermline manager told the media after the 5-1 result at Arbroath:-

“Winning games is the be all and end all but it is performances that win you games I believe and the way they came out in the first half, the way they moved the ball about, the way they had the bravery to take the ball. Joe Chalmers and Chris Hamilton taking it in those areas, the centre backs willing to take risks which we have been asking them to do. Some of the goals that we scored tonight were excellent so it was a very good performance.”

Would that be the best performance that you have had from a Dunfermline team?

“Overall yes. I think that have been spells in games that have been different. The one down at Falkirk was a very good tactical performance in terms of how we kept areas tight as a team. We showed them into areas where we wanted to but in terms of the way we moved the ball and we continued to do it, yeah. They were ruthless with getting the five goals and we possibly could have had more.

“We were up against a very good Arbroath side so we knew that coming up that it was a very tough place to come but overall I think that is the best all round performance of this season so far but there is certainly more to come from that group.”

Four different goalscorers, you must be pleased with that?

“Four really good goals when I think of them apart from Bene’s. Is he even getting his, he said to me it was going into Pleasureland and must have hit somebody. I don’t know, I couldn’t really see very well. No, Matty needs to add more goals to his game. He has worked very hard on his game and what a future he could have if he can do that. He is great to work with.

“Craig’s (Wighton) goal, wow! I will need to see it back but what a team goal, it looked excellent and he was excellent all night. The first goal from Macca was a great team goal as well, a cut back and played down that side. We had some really good moves tonight and I’m delighted for them but strip it all back, it is down to hard work.

“I have seen the stats and it didn’t look like a 4-0 at half time or a 5-1 come the end with the amount of running that they did. High speed running and distance covered overall. Credit to the players and I was told after the game as well that was a team that we lost to four times last season. Psychology in their head it was maybe there for some of them but it certainly didn’t show if it was and it certainly won’t be there anymore.”

Some will be surprised that you only used two subs and they were in 89 minutes with just one to go?

“I think there was seven minutes to go. Dave (Mackay) can’t really work his stopwatch at times. We want to be ruthless and we have got two days off. They will recover tomorrow then they are off Sunday before we have a big game against Airdrie.

“We didn’t really want to go basically two weeks without a game. There is a reserve game on Tuesday (v Dundee) but we will use that for the younger ones. They played, for them, a very high pressure game against Alloa. Again I will apologise to nobody for my substitutions in games.

“I have sometimes made them at half time and upset people, I sometimes leave it too late and upset people so it is just game management. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t but I certainly didn’t want to go, if you count last Saturday’s game against Queen of the South, the fourteen days (without) and then play Airdrie. That was not what we wanted to do, I’m glad we had a game. If we didn’t we were going to play Dundee United in a bounce game because Liam Fox had offered that, which we would have done and gone with a strong eleven in that as well.

“The one that missed out tonight was Aaron Comrie. He is sign but there was going to be senior players missing out. The two - Aaron Comrie and Max Little - missed out.there was always going to be one senior outfield player which was Aaron because of the amount of work that he has done and a goalkeeper who were going to miss out.

“It was great for the kids (Taylor Sutherland and Andrew Tod) getting on but you earn your place on the pitch at a football club. They are doing great, I’m not saying that in any other way. What you don’t do is just, and I have never done it, give players the chance to go out and play just because you are winning a game 4-0 or 5-0 at any stage.

“You have got to earn that and those two that came on tonight have earned that hence the reason they got on. I was delighted to see them on the pitch playing a great wee 1-2. I need to check Dave’s stopwatch!”

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