Sunday 17 December 2017

Manager urges fans to stick with Rovers during poor run of form

SLIGO Rovers manager, Ian Baraclough, has pleaded with fans to stick by his out of form team.

Speaking after his side's frustrating scoreless draw with struggling Bohs at the Showgrounds on Saturday, Baraclough said he could understand supporters' frustration but he said everybody needed to stick together at this difficult period in the season.

Rovers have failed to score in their last four games and haven't won since defeating Derry City 3-0 on May 6th.

"I can understand our fans' frustration", said Baraclough.

"They are used to seeing us scoring plenty of goals but now we haven't scored in four games.

"Of course that is frustrating. I don't think it's happened to me before in my career. "The one positive is that we are creating chances. It just happening for us in front of goal and that is obviously a concern. "Nobody is more disappointed than me. I breathe, eat and drink football and I will analyse this a lot and have a good think about it. I'm sure things will turn for us"

The manager said he had no intention of changing the team's style of play in a bid to end the goal drought.

"We've got to keep doing the right things", he insisted.

"I'm not going to change the way we play. We like to play entertaining football; there's no way we're going to go route one and start smashing the ball long. That's not the way to improve things.

"We haven't become a bad attacking team overnight.

"We've just got to keep working hard and be patient. As long as we are creating chances - and we are - the goals will come"

Rovers were without Anthony Elding, Raffaele Cretaro, Danny Ventre, Lee Lynch and Evan McMillan against Bohs but Baraclough wasn't prepared to make excuses.

"They are important players but we've got a big squad and we should be able to cope with injuries and suspensions. I'm not going to make excuses on that score", he said.

"We're missing some players at the moment but others are coming back. Seamus Conneely got through a full game against Bohs; Liam Martin came in for his League debut and did really well, bringing youthful exuberance to the team, and Kieran Djilali had a very good game. He's getting used to what the Leaue of Ireland is like how and he's getting better all the tme. And we got some more game time for Danny North. So there are positives as well as negatives", Baraclough added.

Reflecting on the pattern of the game, the manager agreed it was frustrating not to get three points.

"I felt we started at a good tempo and stamped our authority on the game early on which was important", he said. "We had a shot cleared off the line and hit the post in the first few minutes and, overall, I felt we were excellent in the first half. We could have been two or three up at half-time.

"In the second half, we didn't make the ball do the work. We came a bit anxious the longer the game went on but we kept working hard and I couldn't fault the lads at all", he said.

Sligo Champion

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