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McCann’s Post-Blackburn Assessment

14 September 2021

Grant McCann felt his team controlled long periods of the 2-0 defeat at Blackburn Rovers but needed to show more composure in the final third.

Quick-fire second-half goals from Daniel Ayala and Ben Brereton Diaz meant the Tigers left Ewood Park empty handed, with Josh Magennis having an earlier goal disallowed for offside.

“I thought our general play was good and we controlled most of the game, in terms of what we were trying to do,” said McCann.

“That spell, for 10-15 minutes, Blackburn came strong and we’ve conceded off a set-play. The second one was just a sucker-punch.

“I was pleased with the boys tonight. They kept going, they kept going, we created opportunity after opportunity.

“We’re just slashing at things at the minute, maybe we’re trying too hard. I’ve never seen so many shots go over the crossbar, from players who are usually quite clinical and deadly in those situations.

“I thought we scored a legitimately good goal tonight, which the linesman has ruled out. I’m surprised when I saw it back that he made the wrong decision because Josh was behind the ball.

“That maybe changes the game and those are the fine margins that aren’t going our way at the minute.

“If we continue to play like that, and continue to show that drive going forward, we’ll be fine.

McCann continued: “I was pleased with the way we performed and how we set the team up.

“We wanted our full-backs to be aggressive, and Lewie (Coyle) and Callum (Elder) were brilliant again in terms of what they did.

“We wanted Richie to try to control the game, which he did, for large periods of the game.

“The bit that’s missing for us at the moment is at the top end of the pitch.

“We know we need to be better with what we do up there. It may be a confidence thing, it may be a bit of pressure on them, but we’ll get there.”

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