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Russ: We can't have this feeling again

MK Dons boss Russell Martin reflects on the Carabao Cup defeat to Coventry City...

6 September 2020

Russell Martin’s men put in a spirited performance against Sky Bet Championship Coventry City on Saturday but the MK Dons boss couldn’t shake the feeling of disappointment at not coming away with the victory.

The Dons dominated their visitors at Stadium MK, enjoying 68 per cent possession and going close to finding the net on a number of occasions – including from the penalty spot midway through the first half.

It was Coventry, though, who would book their place in Round Two of the Carabao Cup and that has left Martin feeling frustrated, despite all the positives.

“I'm really disappointed not to win it,” he said in his post-match press conference.

“We controlled the game, even when it was 11 vs 11. We created a lot, we moved the ball well and looked dangerous.

“We created some really good chances. I felt we should have had a couple of goals but we didn't. If we score the penalty, it's a different game.

“I said at half time the only way they'd score was a counter-attack or a set piece. We stopped the counter-attack really well, but we gave away a silly free kick and didn't deal with it.

“I'm, angry and disappointed by it because the performance deserved a lot more. I don't want to see it again. I don't want to see all the positives and lose 1-0.

“Big moments in games define games and we didn't do well enough in them. We had more than enough chances and big moments in front of the goalkeeper and we didn't take them.”

He continued: “If there is one game they can be forgiven for, it's probably today – their first competitive game in so long. But we have to improve for the next game.”

When focusing on the positives, there is plenty for Martin to take into the Sky Bet League One campaign, which gets underway this coming Saturday against Doncaster Rovers - including the performances of his younger stars and debutant Lasse Sorensen.

“Matty [Sorinola] was great. He got better as the game went on and he did great. John Freeman was excellent too, playing in a position he is unfamiliar with.

“Credit to the youngsters – they listen, they take in the details and they learn quickly and that's why they get their opportunity. Both of them took it today.

“Lasse Sorensen was excellent on his first game, considering he's not trained with us. He's got character, quality and athleticism, everything we wanted him to bring to the team.”

Martin also provided an update on Ben Gladwin, who was left out of the squad for Saturday’s Carabao Cup tie.
“He got a knock in training on Friday so we had to take him out while we have a look at it.

“Hopefully the results will come back in a few days when it settles down. It's too early to tell whether he'll be ready for Tuesday.”

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