Yeovil Town manager Russell Slade admits that his side learnt a harsh lesson at the Riverside Stadium last night. Recognising the quality of the opposition, Russell had no complaints about the 5-1 scoreline against Middlesbrough, saying that his side should use it in a positive way of learning how to better themselves as a team:
"It was a really tough evening against a very good side. You have to remember from our point of view we had our whole left side missing from the start of the season in Nathan Smith and Danny Schofield and perhaps that was a little bit damaging for us as well. But we kept going and we kept trying to play. Middlesbrough showed some fantastic finishing that shows if you don't close down and if you make mistakes you get punished. They showed all those lessons. I just think that if we could have been playing them every week in pre-season, we would have been a much better side now, because we'd be learning all the time. I'm not sure how much Middlesbrough would be learning but we would be learning plenty."
Russell also added that the sheer spectacle of playing against Premier League opposition was something to celebrate before returning to the more routine matter of League One football:
"It is a terrific stadium and we played against a terrific side, who had plenty of ammunition to throw on as you saw on the teamsheet. So they will go back to their Premier League looking for a win on Saturday and we'll go back to League One, looking for success at Carlisle. That's the nature of football - the fact that these two clubs have been brought together and that is a first for Yeovil Town to be playing against Middlesbrough [in a competitive fixture]. As a player and as a manager, you want to come to these places more and more, but we will go back to our respective leagues now and get on with life and we hopefully will both be successful."
Nothing to do but get a bit of black humour out of such adversity, so :
"I think the first goal came too early.......... as did the second, third, fourth and fifth.
The goal just after half-time really was a killer when you've said [to the players] to try and stay with it because at 3-1 you never know. But it took all of 45 seconds to undo us there unfortunately.
I have to say though that I enjoyed some of the stuff that Middlesbrough were playing. It was a pleasure to watch albeit it hurt when the ball went in the back of the net. But there was some positive things which I saw, the young boy McCollin that came on for the last 25 minutes showed some good signs and we are hopeful he can make an impression at our level."
On the debut of new loan signing James Dayton, Slade said :
"It was a baptism of fire for him, wasn't it? We got him on a train last night and he arrived at the hotel at 10.40 p.m., so he doesn't know anybody. I got him from Neil Warnock, who has done me a few favours over the time, and he really didn't get into it too often. But I needed to do something to give us some width."
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