Leeds United (H) Foster's Reaction
For the second Emirates FA Cup tie running against Leeds United, Argyle drew 1-1 with their fellow Sky Bet Championship side in 90 minutes – however, this time, the Yorkshire side made extra time count.
Leeds emerged 4-1 winners, with goal contributions aplenty from quality players who stepped off the bench of Daniel Farke’s team.
In contrast, Argyle – who by the way put in a huge shift, in atrocious weather conditions, and worked extremely hard to a man – had just six substitutes available to them, three of whom are still under-18s players.
Nevertheless, Brendan Galloway’s goal in the second half levelled a game that Leeds had led via Italy international Willy Gnonto, and it was only when a depleted Argyle began to tire that Leeds powered clear.
Argyle Head Coach Ian Foster was without nine first-team players for a combination of being ineligible, injured, or absent for personal reasons.
He said: “I feel for the players for the scoreline; I think it’s a tad unfair on us. We’re obviously desperately disappointed with the result because we wanted to stay in the competition as long as we could.
“You play against top opposition, and they can be quite devastating at times. It’s a little bit sobering for us but we learn from it. We have to review the game properly and make sure we don’t make those same mistakes again.
“When you play top quality teams they can make like-for-like changes or, in Leeds’ case, respectively, probably better than what they had on the pitch. We knew the issues we had going into the game, there’s not a great deal we can do about any of that, but we get a lot of those players back for the weekend, and that’s important for us.
“The guys are full of character, and showed a great togetherness, even when we went behind. I was pleased; I thought we deserved to get back in the game at the time we did.
“We posed a threat to Leeds, particularly for the first 105 minutes, I thought we were excellent. We’ll take the positives out of the game, and use it in the games to come.”
The next game is about as far away as it gets for Argyle: Sunderland away. The game on Wearside on Saturday will see Foster have a number of players back at his disposal, and he says that focus is now on regrouping in an effort to continue a two-match winning run in the league.
“We’ve got to dust ourselves down, recover properly and make sure we’re ready to go at Sunderland at the weekend,” said Foster.
“I’m sure the players will be down [after the Leeds result], but it’s my job to pick them up. We’ll be ready; we’ll be prepared at the weekend.”