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League Two

Exeter City boss Paul Tisdale savours derby double

26 March 2014

Exeter City boss Paul Tisdale praised his resurgent side following their 2-1 comeback win at play-off chasing Plymouth Argyle, a result which secured the double over their arch-rivals.

City recorded their second win in four days thanks to Eliot Richards' third goal in three games as he converted Tom Nichols' unselfish square pass from six yards for the 83rd minute winner.

Plymouth's first-half dominance was rewarded when Reuben Reid converted a 45th minute penalty after City skipper Danny Coles handballed Matt Parsons' cross from the left.

Nichols fired a warning shot at the start of the second half as his angled drive beat goalkeeper Jake Cole and came back off the foot of the post.

In the 69th minute City midfielder Liam Sercombe restored parity with a 20-yard leveller, which looped up over Cole after being deflected before Richards earned them the bragging rights.

Tisdale said: "Without gloating too much there won't be too many teams in the bottom half of the League Two that will play that way under that kind of pressure.

"I am delighted with the team and the way we played. The result at this stage of the season is everything.

"We didn't have the numbers forward in the first half and we changed the formation in the second half and pressed the ball higher. I knew 90 seconds into the game we needed to change the shape.

"But the players believed they could do it at half time, we played really good football. We didn't panic and our performance was enhanced by a quality pitch to play on.

"We finished strong and played our game. That is what I am so pleased about.

"There is no blame for the penalty. I thought the referee was brilliant, he was a strong proper referee.

"Our performances have been improving and the last week we have scored some goals. We have got every player in the squad fit and that helps.

"I thought at half time the next goal would win it, but we are confident we had a chance in the second half."

Argyle boss John Sheridan was left fuming and frustrated by the Greens' defeat.

"I was very pleased with the first half, I thought we started well and created chances," he said. "You get the goal and are 1-0 up in a massive game, massive crowd, great atmosphere.

"I am watching different players going out in the second half, when we should be on the up, raising our game and lift it.

"The biggest problem for us is that we could not retain the ball, we didn't get two passes together and when we did pass it was the wrong type of pass.

"And we just gave them the momentum and they are a good footballing side and they just come into the game. It was just down to us.

"One week I am looking at them thinking they are good players, the next week they are not and it's just hard to take sometimes.

"I thought for a derby in the first half we competed well and deserved our lead. Then we come out and look a totally different team. We are just flat.

"Exeter played better than us in the second half."

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