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ROWETT: BREWERS STILL LOOKING FORWARDS

26 February 2014

Albion still aiming to climb table

Burton Albion boss Gary Rowett was still mulling over the events at Plainmoor when he tried to work out whether it was another point gained on the road or two points dropped against a Torquay United side battling for their League 2 lives although he admitted that he was disappointed with the equaliser that Elliiot Benyon scored just seven minutes after Damien McCrory had given the Brewers the lead with his first goal of the season.

"At this moment I'm not too sure whether that can be considered a good point or not" said Rowett, "To travel for four and a half hours on the day of a game and to ask the players to play how you want them to play is never easy, especially on the back of two other away trips but I felt that after going one nil up with the way we defend usually particularly with the formation that we played that it should have been game over. The goal we conceded was sloppy and disappointing. At that point we just let ourselves down a little bit and then if you look at the rest of the game then in the second half we have had the two clearest chances which have both fallen to Knowlesy which perhaps he should have done better with but he is in the right places and the front two that we brought on changed it a bit for us. Billy also had a header tipped over. I am actually trying to remember a Torquay shot that Rob Lainton has had to try and save. Apart from the free kick right at the end a a few set piecesĀ  I dont think they have troubled us too much."

Albion were left to rue those missed chances and the Brewers boss admitted that missed chances are all that is stopping his team from being a genuine top three side at the moment.

"We have drawn a lot of games this season and in every single one I think we have had plenty of chances to go on and win the game and sometimes those are the fine lines between success and failure - if you can call being in fifth place a failure of any sorts. That is the only thing that has stopped us being in the top three and that is a little disappointing as I believe we have the players who I feel can score goals. Maybe we havent shared the goals around enough and if you look at it, apart from Billy and Adam who have got ten and nine goals, which is ok although we would like them to have a few more but who comes next? somebody with two goals or something like that? that is what is letting us down really."

Rowett changed his formation for the game to three centre halves with wingbacks, two central midfielders and two attacking midfielders supporting lone striker Gary Alexander in an attempt to generate a positive result and whilst unsure as to its success he was definitely pleased to welcome back left back Damien McCrory who went on to give Albion the lead.

"We changed it around a little bit and changed the system and challenged the players a little bit more, both physically and mentally" Rowett explained, "We tinkered with it a little bit because our results over the last few games havent quite been as we would have liked. Damien came back in and did really well. If you looked in the first half, he was the man out there as a left wing back although we probably didnt get him on the ball enough but I just thought that despite the state of the pitch if we could get Zeli and Adam in those little pockets around Gary up front then we could cause one or two problems and maybe surprise them a little bit. I think what we have learned tonight is that we are better at 4-4-2. I have just said to the lads in the dressing room that we gave them licence to get on the ball and pass it - we didn't do that particularly well so we have to make sure we are very good at 4-4-2 and not do it half heartedly which I think we have done occasionally. Damo coming back into the side was a huge plus and his goal as well was fantastic."

The change in formation also allowed Rowett to give a full debut to deadline day signing David Gray who operated as the right sided wingback and the Brewers boss was pleased with the contribution of his latest recruit.

"I thought David did quite well for us on his first start out on the right hand side of midfield. He got stuck in and put some good balls into the box."

Despite only finishing as a draw the result at Plainmoor saw Albion move up a place to fifth in the Skybet League 2 table as a result of Fleetwood's surprising home defeat to Plymouth Argyle and the Brewers boss was adamant that his side were still looking ahead rather than over their shoulders at the pack of clubs trying to break into the play-offs.

"At the moment we are still looking up to see if we can still catch the teams in the top three rather than worrying about picking up enough points to stop us dropping out of the play-off places. I still think that we are in a great position and I still think we can be really positive and we have a home game against Accrington on Saturday and we have got to go and win that game if we want to achieve what we have set out to achieve this season."

"We have had, arguably, eighteen months of success. Whether that success is judged by making the play-offs or automatic promotion other people will have to judge but what we have tried to do is get the best out of the players that we have."

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