Moniz: My side must fight for their lives

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Leigh Curtis

AN ‘ashamed’ Ri­cardo Moniz ques­tioned his side’s com­mit­ment to the cause af­ter Notts County suf­fered a late col­lapse at AFC Wim­ble­don.

The Mag­pies had taken the lead in the 16th minute when Haydn Hol­lis sent a loop­ing header over James Shea.

The Dons could have fallen fur­ther be­hind early in the sec­ond half when Izale McLeod pow­ered a free header over the bar from six yards.

But Ard­ley’s side, who made it five games un­beaten in League Two, fought back although it took un­til the fi­nal ten min­utes for them to seal the win.

Dan­nie Bul­man equalised with five min­utes left when he nod­ded in Ge­orge Fran­comb’s cross and then Ade­bayo Ak­in­fenwa headed in the win­ner in the last minute.

It leaves the Mag­pies in the lower reaches of League Two, and a fu­ri­ous Moniz said: “I am ashamed and it is my re­spon­si­bil­ity.

“It is al­ways the same sce­nario. I am re­spon­si­ble for the play­ers but I don’t get the sense we are play­ing for our lives.

“When you see how many fans came, you feel shame.

“Even at 1-1 it’s a point. But we al­lowed a cross and we didn’t mark the man.

“The worst thing was we didn’t cre­ate any chances. The only one we did in the sec­ond half was for Mcleod.

“Hol­lis scored a good header and if we had scored sec­ond it would have flat­tered us.

“We didn’t cre­ate, we didn’t get down the sides and beat the full-backs. That wor­ries me more.

“The es­cape is al­ways through the sec­ond goal but de­fen­sively we are so in­con­sis­tent.

“It is un­be­liev­able but the only per­son re­spon­si­ble for that is me. It has left a big scar and there will be changes.”

The in-form Dons now have a run of games against teams be­low them in the league, but boss Neal Ard­ley is re­fus­ing to take any­thing for granted.

“I am de­lighted with the vic­tory and in par­tic­u­lar the sec­ond half per­for­mance,” he said.

“We were strong and a header from Izale McLeod aside, they never re­ally go into our half. “Other than that they didn’t re­ally have any threat.You could see what they were try­ing to do which was a clas­sic away per­for­mance.

“They wanted to put ten men be­hind the ball and stick it out at 1-0.

“We prob­a­bly lacked the qual­ity to break them down, but we kept go­ing and go­ing. There was some anx­i­ety in the sta­dium but we kept driv­ing for­ward.

“On another day you don’t get the win, but it was a per­for­mance of char­ac­ter. It’s five un­beaten in the league now but I’m not tak­ing any­thing for granted.”





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