'It was like a comedy' - Damning assessment from Middlesbrough boss after defeat at Coventry
Middlesbrough boss Neil Warnock says his players need to stop feeling sorry for themselves after a string of disappointing results.
Viktor Gyokeres opened the scoring for Coventry City before Martyn Waghorn finally broke his goal duck for the season as the Sky Blues beat Boro for the first time in nine years.
Defeat left Warnock’s side with just one victory for the season and the experienced manager stressed his side need to stop feeling sorry for themselves after a string of disappointing results.
“We took the game to them in the second half,” reflected Warnock.
“We had a few great chances, their goalie made a super double or triple save.
“To give a goal away like we did is a travesty. We had two players on the line and it’s gone between them. It was like a comedy.
“The game was too open for my liking. I thought we looked more threatening when we got on the ball and we should have scored that first goal.
“Dear me, we had three opportunities to score and then we hit the bar.
“We’ve got to stop feeling sorry for ourselves. It’s one of those things and it just wasn’t to be.”
Former Manchester United player Paddy McNair was initially named in the starting line-up before being replaced by Sol Bamba after feeling a niggle in the warm-up.
And Warnock added: “We obviously trained all week with Paddy in our plans, but it can happen when you go away on international duty all week. You don’t train to the same intensity and it can happen.
“We didn’t want to risk anything. We wouldn’t risk something like that.
“That being said, I thought Sol Bamba did brilliantly today.”
Mark Robins, meanwhile, praised “a great team performance” after Coventry’s fine 2-0 win over Middlesbrough.
“It was brilliant,” beamed boss Robins. “We worked really hard this week.
“We’ve just spoken in the dressing room and it’s okay us putting game plans into place but they have to execute it, and they did that to perfection.
“I could talk about everyone today. It was a great team performance.
“That starts from the goalkeeper (Simon Moore) with a triple save in the first half. He was magnificent and that gives you the confidence to go on from there.
“(Boro are) really difficult to play against, they’re physical, they’re powerful and they have a lot of experience.
“They’re a team who would be challenging, I reckon, and are set up to challenge.
“I didn’t think we got that close to them last year in both games. This one was a tougher game than those last season.
“I thought the midfield was fantastic. Everyone in the side has contributed greatly to the result.
“I’m delighted for Martyn because he’s worked so hard for every opportunity. He beats himself up when he shouldn’t do that.
“The goal’s come now and you could see the relief in him when he scored.”
Moore kept out Uche Ikpeazu and two Onel Hernandez efforts in one first-half attack and Gyokeres and Waghorn maintained the Midlands club’s perfect home start to the current campaign.