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League Two

Cheltenham Town's Mark Yates praises display despite loss

26 February 2014

Cheltenham Town manager Mark Yates saw his side crushed 4-1 by League 2 leaders Chesterfield - and then praised the performance of his players.

Four goals in seven first-half minutes secured the points for the Spireites before the Robins snatched a consolation after the break.

"It was a crazy game, but believe it or not I actually think it was one of our better home performances this season," Yates said.

"We had 17 chances on goal, but a mad seven minutes in the first half when our defending was shocking at best, has cost us dear.

"They were always going to have more possession that us, but we dealt with it early on and then after we had a corner and a good chance to score, they break and it was a hell of a finish. But it should never have happened and suddenly we were out of the game.

"We wanted to win the game, but defending like that makes it impossible and we have to pick ourselves up quickly to go again on Saturday.

"At 0-0 we were in the game and created some good chances but we didn't make the correct decision and that meant we wasted some good opportunities.

"They have good players and they were good finishes but we have to look at ourselves and ask questions."

Dan Gardner rifled in Chesterfield's opener midway through the half with Eoin Doyle doubling the lead within a minute.

Further goals followed from Ollie Banks and Liam Cooper as the visitors romped into a four-goal interval lead.

But it was a more determined Cheltenham side after the break, with Byron Harrison reducing the arrears when he turned home a corner.

More could have followed for the home side had it not been for a string of good saves from Tommy Lee in the visitors' goal.

Spireites manager Paul Cook said: "It was an incredible spell for us because some of the goals were very, very good but we certainly won't get too excited.

"The first-half performance was probably as good from an attacking team away from home as you will see all season. We had constant threat, pace and movement and that's against a very good Cheltenham side.

"Mark Yates' teams never lie down for anyone and you could see that second half, they deserve a pat on the back because it would have been easy for them to cave in.

"I am lucky to be Chesterfield's manager and I have always been very proud to manage all the clubs I've managed. It is easy to say how good a manager I am when we have won but I will be keeping my feet on the ground."

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