Pressley: ‘Penalty’ cost Cov the points
STEVEN Pressley felt his Coventry City side were denied a clear penalty as they came from behind to salvage a point at home against Fleetwood – but he refused to blame referee Lee Collins.
The Sky Blues were forced onto the back foot by Graham Alexander’s fast-starting Fleetwood side, who went ahead in the 19th minute when Andrew Webster headed a Gareth Evans cross beyond his own goalkeeper.
The Cod Army continued to enjoy the better of the first half, with Antoni Sarcevic close to doubling the visitors’ lead with a lob on the half hour.
But Pressley made changes at half-time, bringing promising 18-year-old James Maddison on in place of Josh McQuoid as the hosts set about getting level.
Left-back Ryan Haynes dribbled past his man and into the box seconds after the restart before going to ground, only to be cautioned by referee Collins for simulation.
Fleetwood looked set to weather the storm, but were denied their fourth away win of the League One season ten minutes from time when Gary Madine headed Adam Barton’s high ball across goal for substitute Simeon Jackson to scramble home.
“Without doubt we should have had a penalty,” Pressley said of the incident which saw Haynes booked.“I’ve seen it again, and it was a penalty kick.”
But the former Scotland international acknowledged that the Sky Blues had paid the price for their poor start.
“In the opening 30 minutes of the game, Fleetwood had the better of it,” he admitted.
“For the remaining 60 minutes I thought we were excellent. It took a lot of perseverance and a lot of effort from the players to get the point, but for most of the 90 minutes I felt it was a game that we deserved to win.”
Pressley’s former Scotland colleague Alexander felt that the draw was the correct outcome.
“I think over the 90 minutes a point was a fair result,” the former Coventry midfielder reflected.
“I thought we controlled the first half and Coventry had the better of the second half.
“Looking back on the first half, we should have been two or three up at half-time.We played some exceptional football and created good opportunities.”
And Alexander insisted that his young side could have left the Midlands with all three points had they made their first-half dominance count.
“If we had just got another goal, it would have given us the extra cushion and maybe given us a bit more composure,” he added.“But when it’s 10, you know they can come back.”
STAR MAN JAMES MADDI