Hill - Brilliant For All The Wrong Reasons
Not one usually to mince his words, manager Keith Hill has described our loss to Halifax in our last pre season friendly as being 'brilliant for all the wrong reasons'.
Speaking to the Official Site as he looked ahead to our weekend friendly against Wigan Athletic, the gaffer also took the opportunity to reflect on our showing in the last match.
'It was brilliant, absolutely superb, but for all the wrong reasons. We really exposed the players to their vulnerabilities and went through every extremity, but it's something I wanted to do. The way we conceded the goals was atrocious - I think my mother could have defended better from set pieces. In two games now we've conceded three goals from set plays and it just comes down to individual responsibility.'
Going on to describe it as being a very 'uncomfortable ride' Hill is adamant that he wouldn't have done anything differently if he could turn the clock back and he certainly didn't regret anything about the game.
'It was the best thing that could have happened to us. I do believe it has given us a little bit of a jog on. We're too nice at the minute, but we've got to be nasty. It's nice to be nice but I like nasty winners and we've got to get that nasty streak back.'
'Halifax's remit on the night was to win the game, mine was totally different. My remit was to expose the players and I did that to great effect. I'm not stupid, I'm not mad, I've got a plan and the plan will continue to develop over pre season and into League One.'
He qualifies it by saying that he has 46 league games to focus on and he won't be experimenting on those because the aim is to win as many of them as possible, stay in League One, so we can continue to build, so now is the chance to try some weird and wacky things.
'Everybody has got to trust me and they've got to bear with me - the players will.'
With Wigan having a far better pedigree than Halifax fans can be forgiven for being a bit twitchy ahead of that friendly given our last result and Hill is again hoping for a stern test that he can see a reaction from the players in.
'They've got a very strong squad in depth and I'm sure that we'll see a very good footballing side in action. We have to, first and foremost, make it competitive, and if we do, it will be a stern test. It's a question of sticking to our plan. It's all preparation.'