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Gaffer's Post-Match Thoughts

15 February 2023


Gaffer's Post-Match Thoughts

15 February 2023

Jim Bentley says that Leyton Orient could have been out of sight in the first-half, but Dale stuck in there and reacted to get a goal back in the second-half.

Two first-half goals were enough for Leyton Orient to take the three points on Tuesday night. Dale pulled a goal back in the second-half against the league leaders but were unable to equalise. 

"It's a Long journey down, we prepared right. Done everything that we thought would be the right way to go. We’ve done bits and pieces this morning and analysis in regards to set plays, just to back up certain bits that we’re trying to do. We’ve changed little bits, we’ve gone through them and shown them stuff," said Bentley.

"In the afternoon we’ve gone through how Leyton Orient are going to play. Lets have it right, they’re the best side in the league. And you can see, one million percent, they’ll go up this season.

"So, we come off the back of playing four of the top six sides recently and arguably we could have took something from every game. Obviously this one could’ve totally got away from us, they pummelled us in the first-half. Tactically we got a little bit caught in-between when to press, when to drop off. Stuff that we’ve gone through, stuff that’s worked for us.

"There still was evidence of nicking that ball in midfield and getting a break. There was one or two good bits of play but they were miles better. They got out the traps, the crowd got behind them. They're a good crowd here, very vocal. They cheered them on. It was like playing in the Premier League at times, because they’re that good.

"But, I think we probably paid them a little bit too much respect. We just got caught in between when to go and when to drop. It’s not as if they cut us open for the goals. There’s one long straight ball which we’ve got to deal with. Again, we’ll have to have a look at where it comes from. It’s our attack and suddenly there’s a 60/70-yard ball over the back of our defence and it’s in the back of the net.

"The next one, it's our Achilles heel. We have been defending them. If we face - we have all the stats to go with it - 24 or 25 set plays in a game, we seem to be defending 22 or 23 of them right. But we get done, and it looks poor on those one or two times.

"Very similar to Salford and very similar today, the winning goal is a ball in our box. We don’t deal with the first phase and suddenly someone gets time and space to bring it down.

"We’ve gone through 40 minutes on the analysis today. We’ve changed things. We’ve gone through things, but ultimately we haven’t defended our box in that one moment. We haven’t reacted well enough on an attack against us, and to a long ball.

"But, as I say first-half they were miles better than us, they cut through us at times and as I say, sometimes you have just got to hold your hands up.

"But we did react in the second-half. We’ve come out, had a go, got a little bit tighter.

"This is what I’m saying. Take tactics out of it, take set plays out of it. The game is about running hard, first phase, second phase, winning headers, winning tackles, being a little bit more vocal with each other, getting over each other, passing the ball better, being a bit brighter in possession and suddenly we were on the front foot.

"We then score a great goal, again a good counter attack. Overloads, underloads, runs into the box and Danny gets a clean run in on goal and dispatches it perfectly. Pleased for him to get his first goal, and from that point you’re thinking come on then.

"They’re still kicking the back door, they’re still a threat. But, like you say they were miles better than us first-half and we were quite a bit better than them in the second-half.

"The free-kick situation, where they played it and left it and we go through, just square it and put it in the back of the net.

"There was a couple of set plays going in where you’re thinking it might be there, we can go and nick a point.

"They could’ve been out of sight. We stuck in there and we had a good go.

"Ultimately you take everything out of the game, they score two, we score one and we lose the game again in another one where - as I say - playing four of the top six sides where you could’ve took something from it in the end.

"But, I am glad that we’re not playing them every week."

Watch Bentley’s full interview below via our official YouTube channel.

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