Crawley boss Richie Barker challenges his team to bounce back
A Capital One Cup tie against Premier League opposition is the perfect opportunity to bounce back from a disappointing npower League 1 defeat, says Crawley Town manager Richie Barker ahead of his team’s Third Round meeting with Swansea City.
Crawley lost 5-2 at home to League 1 leaders Tranmere Rovers – after scoring twice in the first 16 minutes – on Saturday, the result pushing Barker’s side out of the Play-Off places and leading to some powerful words of admonishment from the manager.
Former Bury boss Barker, who took over at newly promoted Crawley just before the start of the season, said in the aftermath of the game that, “one or two players will have to pull their fingers out before Swansea come here on Tuesday evening.”
The manager’s anger had subsided somewhat following the weekend and, as he looked ahead to the meeting with Swansea, he told football-league.co.uk: “We didn’t play poorly all-round as a team against Tranmere, it was individual errors that cost us.
“I’ve now looked at the stats from the game and we had 29 shots and 54 per cent of the possession, so that tells its own story. But we were 2-1 up at one stage and dominated 80 per cent of the first half, so the final result was very disappointing.
“We’ve quickly got the chance to get the momentum going again though, and after two excellent Capital One Cup results so far [wins against Championship teams Millwall and Bolton Wanderers] we’ll hopefully go on enjoying the competition.
“But it’s obviously going to be a very tough task against Swansea. They’ve lost their last two Premier League games after making a great start to the season and so they’ll see this as a good opportunity for them to bounce back to winning ways.
“I’ve looked at the team line-up they put out when they beat Barnsley in the last round and it was mostly first-team regulars, so I’m sure that they will do the same against us and they’ll definitely come here looking to progress into the next round.
“For us to beat them our game will have to be at 100 per cent and Swansea will probably need to be 70 per cent, but that does happen in games like this and it’s what Cup upsets are made of – and that’s what we’ll be aiming to produce.”