Base­ment boys Cov have pride at stake

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Sam Gas­coyne

COVEN­TRY City signed off their sorry home cam­paign at the Ri­coh Arena with a sur­prise win over mid-ta­ble Walsall to lift them­selves off the foot of the ta­ble for the first time since Jan­uary.

Ge­orge Thomas pulled the trig­ger on the only goal, to the re­lief of man­ager Mark Robins.

“To win in front of our sup­port­ers was im­por­tant and I was pleased with the way we per­formed, es­pe­cially in the first half when I thought we were re­ally, re­ally good,” he said.

“It is pleas­ing to be off the bot­tom. It is im­por­tant not to fin­ish bot­tom, be­cause it is em­bar­rass­ing where we are. But it is what it is and we have to try and build.

“The sup­port was fan­tas­tic and that will keep me go­ing through the sum­mer be­cause we will be work­ing re­ally hard to bring the right blend of the peo­ple in.”

The first op­por­tu­nity of the game fell to the hosts af­ter 11 min­utes when Ruben Lameiras saw his ef­fort blocked by Craig MacGil­livray who was forced into a sec­ond quick-fire save when Kevin Fo­ley fol­lowed up with the re­bound.

The Sad­dlers al­most took the lead just af­ter the half-hour mark when Joe Edwards’ in­swing­ing free-kick was headed inches wide of the post by Matt Pre­ston.

It was al­ready rel­e­gated Coven­try who went in ahead at half­time, Thomas grab­bing the opener af­ter his shot from the edge of the area found the bot­tom cor­ner, the 20 -year-old’s third goal in six games.

Walsall pressed for an equaliser as the sec­ond half pro­gressed, and would have found one if not for the quick re­ac­tions of Gael Bi­gi­r­i­mana, who knocked James O’Connor’s headed ef­fort off the line.

The vis­i­tors’ up­hill bat­tle be­came that much harder with 20 min­utes to go af­ter they were re­duced to ten­men when Eoghan O’Connell was shown a sec­ond yel­low for a foul on Thomas.

A frus­trated Jon Whit­ney said: “For the first 45 min­utes of that game we were way be­low par, it had an end of sea­son feel to it. You can­not be that be­low stan­dard and ex­pect to get some­thing from the game, and for that I’d like to apol­o­gise to the trav­el­ling fans.

“The sec­ond half we gave it a go, but you can’t keep giv­ing goals the first goal.

“We huffed and puffed but didn’t re­ally cre­ate and clear cut chances, we were very lack­lus­tre and I’ve told my play­ers that.

“Peo­ple say you’ve got noth­ing to play for, but for me that’s still an­other de­feat on my record.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.