‘A solid away performance’ – O’Leary
Posted: Thursday, March 18th 2021
Thursday, March 18th 2021
Nigel Pearson was pleased with how his players applied themselves to earn a point in Wednesday night’s goalless draw at Blackburn.
While it was a night where Pearson acknowledged City weren’t at their best, he hailed his side for earning what was a rare point for City this season, with the bonus of a clean sheet.
In particular he praised City’s bodies-on-the-line defending and said the squad can be pleased with a point on the board at Ewood Park.
Pearson told Robins TV: “I’m not going to get my singing voice back anytime soon but yes we’ve won enough games, lost far too many and tonight is a really constructive point because we weren’t at our best in the first half but we worked very hard.
“In the second half we showed a bit more game understanding, more organisation. We still created reasonable chances in what was a tight game. We knew they would be a good passing team with rotation, and we gave the ball away too much in the first half. If we had had a few more scruffy points over the course of the season we might be better placed but this is learning experience for all of us.”
“I was absolutely delighted with the application again and the players’ ability to make it work," added Pearson. "We can’t always be easy on the eye but what we can’t do when we’re not easy on the eye is concede goals too easily. It’s a very constructive night for us, considering our away form of late has been good and what we have to do now is start to apply the same values at home.
“We kept them at arm’s length and especially in the second half we were relatively low pressured but, when they came into our half, we put them under a lot of pressure. Some of our defending was great and Max, for all of their possession, didn’t have too much to do. That reflects the game very well and at the other end we looked dangerous at times but we know we didn’t make enough of our possession.”
“The players were really honest again and I like that. They will get a lot of pleasure from being difficult to beat but it feels good when you earn results and tonight, we earnt it because we weren’t as fluid or show the quality we have done. These players have played a lot of games and it’s nice to get some of the others back as well, for Nagy, Zyner, O’Dowda and Walsh, it’s good to have them all involved which is another plus tonight.”
Shotstopper O'Leary was called in to replace Dan Bentley due to illness and he made two saves to keep the clean sheet intact on what was his sixth appearance of the season and second league appearance of the campaign.
Pearson said: “He’s a very self-assured young man. That’s not to say he’s over-confident but he’s a very calm person. It’s good for us when we have to deal with unforeseeable events like Bentley being ill and he’s been excellent this season. I have no qualms with Max coming in there and he’s kept a clean sheet so good for him.”
City return to Ashton Gate where they host Rotherham United on Saturday (March 20th, 3pm KO), live on Robins TV with the matchday show starting at 2.30pm.
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