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League One

McGoldrick the difference - Smith

27 December 2012

Stevenage manager Gary Smith felt David McGoldrick was the difference between the two sides after watching Boro lose 3-1 at home to Coventry.

McGoldrick, on loan from Nottingham Forest, completed the scoring in injury time with his 18th goal of the season. Smith insisted the two sides were equally matched, bar the in-form striker.

"I think the difference between the two teams was McGoldrick," said Smith. "He was a threat from minute one to minute 95. His movement, his appreciation for the game, his ability to finish and his instincts to get in those areas are the difference at this level."

He added: "To have somebody of that ilk in our front line would make a massive difference. If you take him out of their line-up I suspect there would be some differences in how they play."

Lucas Akins put Stevenage in front from the penalty spot but three goals in the final 11 minutes saw Coventry end up as winners. Smith said: "It seems to be a recurring problem, letting in late goals. There was plenty to be happy about in the opening 45 minutes to an hour. We get ourselves in front and things are looking good.

"The first goal though was a real negative to a lot of people. There's too many chins going on chests and shoulders getting turned around, it's just a real problem for us at the moment. And then the second goal was a killer for us."

Richard Wood reacted quickest to a blocked John Fleck shot to tap in and get the Sky Blues back on level terms after 79 minutes. Two minutes after Stevenage had a Mark Roberts header cleared off the line, Carl Baker's curler from the edge of the box gave Coventry the lead in the 89th minute.

And the points were secured a minute later as McGoldrick ran from his own half before chipping goalkeeper Steve Arnold from 25 yards. Coventry manager Mark Robins said: "We were good all day and good value for it in the end.

"We had five or six chances in the first half and didn't take any and you start to think something might go against you. The goal from Wood gives us that little bit of a lift. The supporters from then have played a massive part in keeping us going, and keeping us going forward.

"Make no mistake about it, we're a big club that is punching below our weight. The supporters have started to believe a little bit and we've got to rise to that challenge because they will let us know if we don't."

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