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Dave Edwards: Conceding first is a habit Shrewsbury need to shake off

Shrewsbury will be hoping to get out of the habit of conceding first to allow them to take advantage of their own style of play.

Christian Saydee of Shrewsbury Town celebrates after scoring a goal to make it 1-1 (AMA)
Christian Saydee of Shrewsbury Town celebrates after scoring a goal to make it 1-1 (AMA)

It’s been happening too much for Steve Cotterill’s liking this season and when a side concedes first, it will often mean a changing the way they play.

For Shrewsbury, in particular with their style of play, it would help them much more to take the lead and sit a bit deeper and play on the counter-attack. Doing that, I can see them going on to win games 2-0 or 3-0.

No-one ever likes conceding first, especially away from home and for Shrewsbury it means that the initial game plan will have to change.

It’s something the manager will be keen to address as soon as possible. It’s hard to put your finger on why it happens.

They’ve not been cut through too much, it’s been the culmination of two or three mistakes, even if they’re very small.

Especially away from home, they have to keep staying in the game as long as possible. Keep it at 0-0 and then as other teams push on, especially the bigger teams in the league, with their pace on the counter-attack it would really suit Shrewsbury.

Hopefully they’re just getting it out the way earlier in the season and they can start getting that first goal themselves on a few more occasions.

But, they have got a fighting spirit and they come back in games. The win against Exeter last Tuesday night was terrific. To come from behind and score a late winner would have made it a great evening for the fans. Even though they went 1-0 down on Saturday, I think the manager would have still felt confident they’d get something out of the game. To equalise as quick as they did, and for Christian Saydee to get his goal, it will be great for his confidence moving forward.

It was just a shame that the game went a bit flat after that and not enough players reached the levels to win games of football. There weren’t many stand-out performers and you need that to win games in this league. It can be difficult to get going after that win on Tuesday, especially with the amount of games recently, but they did look a bit more tired emotionally.

Getting back into the game was important and the emotion of losing late on will stick with them for the next game; which strangely is against Port Vale again tonight.

I remember once when I was at Wolves, we played away at Newcastle on the Saturday in the league and then away there again on the Tuesday in the cup. We actually stayed up there as a team and it was a bit of a strange experience. It’s almost like a short pre-season trip.

The game tonight will be very different, however, to the team Shrewsbury played against Wolves in the first group game of the trophy.

I imagine that with Burton on the horizon, which is a big game where Town can build on the home form, that it will be mainly kids tonight.

Hopefully there will be minutes too for Charlie Caton, Tom Bloxham and maybe someone like Rob Street to help him get him up to speed a little bit more.

It’s an opportunity for those players to stake their claim. They’ve not had many opportunities so far this year, so games like this are important to play their way into the manager’s thinking – it’s a big game for those lads.

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