Sinnott Speaks: Delighted with the comeback – but I still gave the players a ticking off

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Altrincham FC manager Lee Sinnott will be giving us the inside track on the Robins’ return to the Conference. Here’s his latest column for Altrincham Today.

I was delighted with the way we fought back at Wrexham on Saturday, coming back from 2-0 down to win 3-2 with three goals in less than 10 minutes in the final quarter of the game.

We went behind in circumstances where we should have done better defensively and then missed a glorious opportunity at the other end.

Things were going really badly when Scott Leather was sent off. Some might argue it was harsh, but the ref has interpreted it as a sending off. Scott was stretching for the ball and as I mentioned to him at half-time, you have to take great care in those situations.

Wrexham’s second goal should have been disallowed for a clear handball by Andy Bishop, but within a minute they were reduced to 10 men as Louis Moult had been shown the red card for what the ref saw as a stamp on Simon Richman… perhaps the less said about that the better.

One man less each side meant there was more space on the pitch, so it was up to us to exploit it, particularly after they had another man sent off for a second yellow card and it was 10 v 9.

The message I was trying to get across was keep moving the ball, keep moving them around and the gaps will open up, because they will tire. That’s just human nature. Gaps will appear, and then hopefully we can exploit them.

Below: Highlights from Altrincham’s comeback win at Wrexham

We took a bit of a gamble by sending on our third sub with 30 minutes or so still left, but we were determined to give it a real go.

It is rare these days that you come back from 2-0 down to win 3-2, so that’s why there was half a ticking off for them at the end. It was because we needlessly made life so difficult for ourselves, through bad defending and bad finishing, after starting the game so brightly.

It was good to see Damian Reeves back among the goals after coming on at half-time. I had jip off supporters for leaving him out of the starting line-up at times last season for tactical reasons.

People may not have noticed, but we have played about four or five different systems this season. Not only that, Reevesie has had a big workload. I know him as well as anyone does, because I have managed him since he was 14.

He has been through a lot of legwork and he needs to be sharp to be getting on the end of chances. His confidence needs to be up as well, and it’s a fact that he has been through a couple of games where chances have come along that he would normally stick away but he hasn’t.

So you think ‘just step aside a little and then we’ll put you on’, and what happens? He’s back among the goals again. You have to work it that way sometimes, and he’s happy because he’s in double figures in the Non-League Paper scoring chart. They were a poacher’s finishes and he was really on his toes. He was ready for those chances when they fell his way. The ball is there, he reacts like a flash and, bang, it’s in the net.

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