Blue Sky Thinking
JOHN SHERIDAN will take the positives from Argyle’s 2-0 defeat to Coventry City...
...as his side more than held their own against the League 1 team.
Sheridan and his side travelled to the Ricoh Arena in search of a place in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Southern Area semi-final, as well as another victory over higher league opposition after defeating Swindon Town 3-2 in the previous round.
The Greens went into the break level with the Sky Blues, having created the better opportunities to score, most notably a fierce strike from Reuben Reid that forced a smart stop from goalkeeper Ryan Allsop.
The introduction of Frank Nouble for the Sky Blues in the second half proved to be the turning point in the game as the former West Ham United forward immediately made his presence felt, earning a corner for his side that was headed home by Gary Madine after 61 minutes.
The Pilgrims pushed forward to grab an equaliser and came agonisingly close to scoring through a Deane Smalley header, but Allsop produced a terrific save to keep Coventry ahead.
Nouble put the game to bed in the 85th minute, breaking from an Argyle corner and beating two players before slotting home just inside the near post of Luke McCormick’s goal.
“I was really pleased with the way we played,” said John. “I thought it was a great effort from the players.
“It is just a shame that we did not end up getting something out of the game.
“I think anyone who watched us would say that we are a decent team – just little things did not go our way, like that unbelievable save [from Smalley’s header].
“Even before the second goal, they have blocked a good little free-kick from us, and it is a great save from Reuben in the first half.
“It is just a shame it ends up 2-0 – they were two goals that could have been prevented. We defended well, and I thought there were a lot of good things.
“It would have obviously been nice to get through. We did not, but Coventry are a good footballing side.
“There was a lot of effort from us, and I thought we played really well at times. There are just times to get your foot on the ball and just relax a little bit more.
“I thought Coxy was excellent in the second half; he played very well. It was a good team effort, but [we conceded] soft goals.
“I am disappointed with the result, but I am not disappointed with how we played.”