Dunfermline Athletic

Managers Post Inverness CT

Saturday, 18th Sep 2021

18/09/21: link to audio of both managers post match interviews

- - Listen to Peter Grant`s post match comments

Dunfermline manager Peter Grant reflected on the difference between last Saturday’s performance at Ayr and contrasted that with the showing in the Inverness Caley Thistle match:-

“There were a lot of good things last week and the goals we conceded were really poor. Today I thought we dug in, we should have won the game, I thought that we had the best chances - there is no doubt in my mind about that. But I have always said to the strikers, yes it would be fantastic if they scored. But in every single game we have had two or three fantastic chances.

“I have to give keepers great credit for the saves they make but that is their job. Obviously there were a couple of bad misses and we were a bit unfortunate at times. A clean sheet always gives you an opportunity to win the game and I thought Craig (Wighton) was going to seal it for us. It would have been a perfect day if we had done that because I thought that we would absolutely have deserved that against a very good side who have done exceptionally well this season.”

How pleased were you with the organisation and fight of the team?

“I have never questioned their fight. The biggest thing is when you lose goals the way we do I think it deflates you and never gives us a start. As I have said many times to you I watch them through training, I know what they have got. I know their desire, I know the way they train and I know the commitment they have.

“That is why sometimes on a Saturday it has been so surprising. But I know what it is like when you are not winning games or you lose a bad goal, it deflates you. When one becomes two then as has happened to us you go up the pitch and miss two or three fantastic chances. You just feel sorry for yourself.

“Today the boys kept battling away but as I say as long as you don’t lose silly goals you always have a chance to win it with the boys that we have at our disposal. I think that proved it today, the substitutes came on and were excellent.

“When I looked at the bench today, and I know that we have had a couple of strange weeks with boys with covid and injuries, but it was fantastic and with somebody like Ross Graham being left out the squad today even though he was fully fit. It was really difficult to do that.

“That is what we have tried to build. I have to give the players great credit for that because a few of them could not train at the beginning of the week and couldn’t take part until Thursday. I think it is easy when you are losing games in the way that we have, to leave yourself out and say that you are just feeling it a little bit.

“Everyone put their neck on the line to try and play today. That showed me a lot before the game. Everyone of them to a man wanted to be fit for the game and wanted to be selected. Hopefully that sets us in good stead. What we need to do is to turn this positive performance, in respect of a clean sheet.

“I believe that we should have won the game, that is me personally. Billy (Dodds) might have a different thought on that but I thought that we deserved to win the game. I felt that a couple of things didn’t go for us at important times.

“Effort, commitment, creating opportunities where we should have scored but we defended really wel and I am very pleased with that. It is a clean sheet, the first of the season and hopefully we can kick on from there.

“You have to work hard every single day of your life. If you don’t work hard and think you have cracked it that is when it has a habit of kicking you in the backside.”

You must have been pleased by the reaction of the supporters?

“I have told you that. I have never had a problem with supporters, I understand their frustrations one hundred per cent. Listen everyone who has known me throughout my career knows that I have never criticised supporters for anything. They pay their money, they deserve to voice their opinion, good bad or indifferent.

“I thought that they were fantastic today but we were down at Ayr last week and we got a lot of criticism and we deserved every single bit of it. We lost the game and I understand that is part of football.

“I am here desperate to hear their voices singing a victory, desperate to send them home with victories because they work hard themselves to be able to come to the games and you want to send them home feeling good about their club.

“I think they see the commitment of the players and I say to the players that is what you are representing every time. Forget the name on your back, it is the badge on the front that you are representing every single time that you play.

“They are the people who support you and you are trying to entertain them, win games for them - that is what we go out on the pitch for. If you do that supporters respond to you. To a man they did that today and I am delighted with them and can only thank them for that.”

Has this been a difficult week for you Peter with talk of the pressure?

“It has been a difficult four or five weeks. I am not one of those guys who kid you on and say that I have not been feeling the pressure, of course you do. Probably if I was younger, I would probably have dealt with certain things differently in respect of thinking maybe you are not good at the job.

“I know that the work that we are putting in is the correct work. If I thought for one moment that I was cheating someone at any time but thankfully Ross (McArthur) and Thomas (Meggle) see the work that is going in, they know the difficulties we have had.

“I think you know me well enough now to know that I never come out and make an excuse out of somebody not being available because the bottom line is that I think I have players good enough players no matter what team I have here to put on a performance. We have not done that often enough.

“The criticism that goes with that I deserve. I have no problem with that. I’d love them to be chanting the boy’s name and be happy going home with a victory. That is what supporters are here to do and the support has been great. I have never had a problem with that at anytime.

“I’d love it if we were winning games of football and everybody was going home happy. It has been a very tough few weeks and that continues when you don’t win games. As a manager people will tell you, enjoy victories for 45 minutes because all you are doing is preparing for the next game.

“You want the supporters to go and enjoy it, you want the players to go a enjoy it because it is a short life but as a manager you don’t enjoy it. You are watching the video for the next game. That is the way it was last Sunday morning at six o’clock in the morning watching the Ayr game. It wasn’t great in respect of watching the result but I had to put the coach’s hat on and think that there was a lot of the stuff that was very good.

“I saw that today again so hopefully we are going in the right direction but we know that we have a hell of a work to do as I have always said. That is not just me throwing a manager’s quote out there, that is a fact. We have to get better at a lot of things. We have to be more clinical, get more clean sheets and getting the first one today is always a start. I was very pleased with a lot of it and having the boys available makes a big difference as well.

- - Hear Billy Dodds thoughts

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