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Cookie Frustrated With Defeat

2 January 2013

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Chesterfield manager Paul Cook was left extremely frustrated after his side suffered a shock 1-0 defeat against his former club Accrington Stanley at The Crown Ground on New Year's Day.

The Liverpudlian left The 'Owd Reds back in October to take the vacant manager's job at Whittington Moor, but Romuald Boco's 66th minute strike was enough to end Stanley's run of nine games without a win and ensure Cook's return to Lancashire rendered pointless.

The result leaves The Spireites four points adrift of the play-offs, as their inconsistent form continued into 2013.

"We didn't start the game particularly well," Cook revealed to Spireites Player.

"Players habits are important and if you don't start the game well, sometimes you struggle to come to terms with what is going on.

"It was a game we were never, ever going to lose. We created a lot of chances, missed a lot of chances and sometimes it just is one of those days.

"But i'm very much into stats and there is a pattern, we don't keep a lot of clean sheets and it is not good enough. If you keep conceding the odd goal to Burton, Morecambe, Accrington, whoever it is we're playing, you've got to score two to win games and that's the most disappointing thing today.

"Sometimes when it's not your day, you draw 0-0, shake hands and go home. So to lose is very, very disappointing."

The visitors dominated proceedings for almost the entirety of the contest, with the returning Marc Richards and Mark Randall both denied by the crossbar within 60 seconds.

The former Port Vale man was excluded over the festive period after suffering a hamstring twinge in the 3-0 defeat at Roots Hall, but he met Luis Boa Morte's cross with a looping effort which landed agonisingly on top of the bar.

And just seconds later, the former Arsenal schoolboy exchanged passes with the Portuguese winger before sending an audacious lob from fully 40-yards which clattered the woodwork with Stanley keeper Cameron Belford scrambling back to his line.

The on-loan Bury stopper also made a string of fine saves to keep the visitors at bay and record Leam Richardson's side's first clean sheet since November.

"We've had enough chances today," Cookie added.

"The keeper got man of the match for them, he made some fantastic saves. We've hit the woodwork I don't know how many times and it was one of those days.

"But we've got aspirations of doing well and since Port Vale away, where we were fantastic, our form hasn't dipped because we have had a couple of draws, but we have also lost a couple and that is the disappointing thing.

"The mentality of players must be that we have never done enough and sometimes with our players I get they feeling they think they have done enough and that isn't right."

The 45-year-old was also left to lament what could of been after another contentious decision saw skipper Sam Hird's last-gasp header chalked off due to an offside flag raised on the near side.

It was the second decision in a matter of days that has gone against Town, after Chris McCready's header was adjudged to have crossed the line in the 1-1 draw with Morecambe.

"We've had a couple of decisions go against us now, haven't we?

"There was the goal against Morecambe where the linesman gave it, but the result is what it is and we can't change it.

"Congratulations go to Accrington on beating us, but going forward we have to have a hunger and desire to make sure we don't get beat. We must make results happen.

"If we'd come here and not created chances you could have a moan, but we have created chances right throughout the game. Some days as a manager you have to admit that it isn't your day, but it disappoints me that we lose.

"If it's not your day, you draw. You live with and keep going. We don't keep a lot of clean sheets at the minute, teams don't have to do enough to score."

Cook takes his charges to Adams Park on Saturday to face another struggling side in the form of Wycombe Wanderers and The Chairboys have been equally as inconsistent as The Spireites this season, having suffered a 1-0 defeat at home to Exeter City on New Year's Day.

Gareth Ainsworth's side are currently languishing on 29 points in League Two and Cook will be looking for a reaction on Saturday.

"We've got ambitions of getting promotion this year," he reaffirmed.

"All of a sudden when you go two or three games without a win, it's not promotion form and our lads have got to realise that you have to make things happen. Unfortunately for us, we don't have enough leaders or characters in the squad.

"As I said, going from the Port Vale game where we get so many plaudits for playing really well, for me I thought we'd really kick on but we haven't and that is something that I shall challenge the players, myself and the rest of the staff with.

"The supporters came here today on New Year's Day and paid a lot of money and stood behind that goal in the rain and we worked hard today, we tried our best but on days like that you are not happy."

You can watch Cookie's interview in full exclusively on Spireites Player.


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