Castle looks to positives
PUBLISHED: 10:12 18 December 2008 | UPDATED: 13:48 06 May 2010
MANAGER Steve Castle believes there are plenty of positives to take out of Saturday s game at Stevenage despite the result. The 4-1 scoreline flattered the hosts and Castle was pleased with how his side matched their opponents. Speaking after the game he
MANAGER Steve Castle believes there are plenty of positives to take out of Saturday's game at Stevenage despite the result. The 4-1 scoreline flattered the hosts and Castle was pleased with how his side matched their opponents. Speaking after the game he said: "We've competed with a team that's a league higher than ourselves and for a great proportion of the game we were the better team. I know that sounds crazy for the people looking at the score but I think anyone that was over here can see that."
Castle has urged his side to stop gifting the opposition goals after seeing the Saints hand their opponents goals in the last couple of games: "I've said to them just then, they're a good group of honest lads. They shoot themselves in the foot so often and if we're honest we've got to start making teams earn their goals. They [Stevenage] haven't in any shape or form.
"I'm absolutely sick for them because that was at worst a draw and you take them back to Clarence Park. I didn't think they [Stevenage] showed anything to be honest, what with the budget they've got. Goals is the name of the game and we've only put one in during the 90 minutes. The lad Morison, who our two centre backs kept quiet, yet again, for the majority of the game, is in my opinion one of the best centre forwards at Conference Premier level and should be playing league football. He has come away with two goals."
Stevenage's third goal was highly controversial with Lee Boylan appearing to be offside. The goal was met with fierce protests from Adam Everitt and Castle feels his side have every right to feel hard done by. "He was (offside) and the linesman has made a mistake that he's just admitted to. It's no consolation at all. If it does stay 2-1 who knows? We had a couple of chances. Gary Cohen had a fantastic chance there that he hasn't put enough power into his header.
"They're a good group of honest lads. Sometimes it's so frustrating but football's frustrating. We talk about Paul [Bastock]. Paul's held his hand up about coming up with there being so much time in the game left but Paul Bastock is Paul Bastock, I'd have him all day long. It's just a mistake."
Paul Hakim returned to his former club on Saturday but Castle feels his front man may still be finding his way back to full fitness: "I don't know whether Paul Hakim's still struggling, he's saying he's not but he doesn't seem as if he's the same Paul Hakim of two or three weeks ago."
The City boss introduced Lee Clarke during the second half of Saturday's game and he confirmed he will consider him as a central midfield option: "I think Lee's just struggling with his weight and he's struggling with fitness but he's a class player, there's no getting around it. We will consider him as a centre midfield player rather than a centre forward at this moment in time. I think Lee Clarke playing against Welling United was a fit Lee Clarke and unfortunately he's done this knee that's kept him out for a month to six weeks and it's put him behind fitness wise."
City travel to Havant & Waterlooville, on Saturday eager to pick up their first league win since November 8. Havant have had a difficult season but Castle is expecting a tough game: "We've lost two games in the league and we've got to get ourselves back on track with that, we're not a million miles away from things. People are beating everybody but it will be hard.
"Havant & Waterlooville have under achieved this year, they've had quite a few negative results but they're still a decent bunch of players that are going to give us a stiff test and we've just got to bounce back. We've just got to take one game at a time and believe that we can get something out of every game we play.