Dunfermline Athletic

Managers Post St Mirren

Saturday, 19th Nov 2011

19/11/11 JM:- "I felt in the first half we were giving them far too much space and time on the ball and when you do that against any team they're going to cause problems.

St Mirren v Dunfermline

Jim McIntyre was disappointed to lose Dunfermline's first ever visit to play St Mirren at Greenhill Road:-

"Anytime you go into a game you want to win it. In the first half St Mirren bossed it, they were the better side although we had a couple of great opportunities to score ourselves. They also had more than they stuck away and the second goal's a killer for us right on the stroke of half-time through our own fault and that was really disappointing.

"I thought we started the second half far better. We spoke about getting tighter and closer to St Mirren and make sure we were putting them under pressure. I felt in the first half we were giving them far too much space and time on the ball and when you do that against any team they're going to cause problems.

"In the second half we got closer and tighter. The introduction of the substitutes helped and we got back in the game and from then on I thought it looked as if we would go on and get an equaliser."

The Manager disagreed that it was a problem with his team's work ethic and claimed that the match was very similar to their opening match of the season:-

"It was more the communication between back and front; there was just too big a distance between the players and that was the problem. When you give St Mirren space and time like that you will have problems because they have decent players. When we sorted that out in the second half then they definitely got to grips with it far better. It was similar at East End Park when we gave them far too much space in the first half and they caused us all sorts of problems that night. For the second half it was a similar team talk and they did that."

The manner in which his side lost the goals at St Mirren Park was disappointing for Macca:-

"Especially the second one. You are never happy about losing any goals but it has come from us having possession of the ball."

Next up is the Pars game in hand at Celtic Park on Wednesday night. It won't be easy for Dunfermline and the Manager is already quoted as saying that anything from Old Firm games will be a bonus:-

"When you get promoted to this league these are the games that you are looking forward to. The players want to go and test themselves against the big boys and you should embrace these kind of situations. You want to go and play in the big stadiums against the big teams. They can go and enjoy it because there is nothing expected of them there. Against Rangers we didn't compete this year and we got well and truly beaten so you must make sure that you go there and compete."

Jim McIntyre confirmed that John Potter is none the worse for his "bang on the shoulder" during the St Mirren match and can be expected to be available for Wednesday night's game.

Although happy with the win, Saints boss Danny Lennon revealed it was a result tinged with sadness. He explained: "I've got to dedicate that victory to Illias Haddad's cousin, a wee 14-year-old who died of an asthma attack last week. We're very much a family here and when one hurts we all hurt. We'd like to dedicate that victory to Illias and his family.

"I think in the first half we created a lot of good opportunities and were kept out by some fantastic goalkeeping by Paul Gallacher. I was delighted with the play in the first half, more so the first 30-35 minutes. We were averaging a shot every three minutes prior to us scoring the first goal. After that I felt we stopped having a pop in the final third and then we started giving away needless and silly free-kicks. That allowed Dunfermline to get the ball into our box, which is a big strength of theirs.

"I must comment on Craig Samson's save prior to the second goal, it was terrific and a key moment in the game. Big Stevie Thompson chases a ball he's got no right to win. He not only wins it, he then comes away with it and puts an absolutely terrific ball in. It's a great time to score and a killer for them.

"I've got to give a lot of credit to Dunfermline and Jimmy (McIntyre) for the second half. They kept a freshness, they kept at us and I'm a bit disappointed in ourselves. A big strength of ours is retaining possession and we're allowed to defend with the ball and the second half was like a game of tennis. The boys did fantastically and showed another great style of character that when we're not dominating games in terms of possession we're still doing the ugly side of the game."

The result lifts Saints up to fifth in the table and extends the unbeaten run to three games. Danny said: "It doesn't surprise me, I certainly believe that with the brand of football in some games we deserve more points than we have. I was absolutely delighted for the fans again. They knew we needed them and they certainly got behind them and it's fantastic they're going home tonight that we're sitting fifth. We've managed to keep in that area in the top six since the beginning of the season and that's our long term aim and ambition, but we know it'll be very very difficult."

Christmas Day 2011



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