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Intensity lacking

Opposition seemed to want it more, says Ardley

23 November 2019

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Neal Ardley says our players haven’t been performing with enough intensity in recent weeks, and it needs to change.

We suffered back-to-back defeats for the first time this season due to a 2-1 loss at Aldershot, despite Kyle Wootton bringing us level after 36 minutes.

The boss felt both goals we conceded were of our own doing but says it’s what he saw elsewhere that is bothering him.

“The mistakes are costing us but that’s not the bit that really gets to me,” he said. “The rest of the game wasn’t intense enough and it’s got to change.

“The one thing that bothers me more than anything is it looked like the opposition wanted it more – and that was the case last week, too.

“Our levels have dropped. We’ve not had the spice and intensity we had earlier in the season, we haven’t won 50/50s and we’ve not done the nitty-gritty well enough in the last few matches.”

Ardley feels teams raise their game against us, and we need to ensure we stand up to it.

“At the start of the season, we tried to recruit players we thought could handle the pressure of playing for Notts County,” he explained.

“People raise their game against us and if we let our levels drop like we have done the last two weeks, we get what we deserve – nothing.

“We have to expect teams to be aggressive against us and need to stand up, win our 50/50s and do the nitty-gritty stuff properly.”

The boss says we must find the way to stop the opposition causing us issues in that respect and admits there is a challenge ahead.

“Maybe teams are working us out but there are solutions to everything,” Ardley added.

“For 90 per cent of the season, the players have got it right and we’ll work to solve the problems.

“There’s a challenge on our hands. We’re a good team that is capable of getting in the play-offs but not unless we bring the side of the game that earns results when you don’t play well.”

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