What is your immediate reaction to that, disappointed with the performance?
Absolutely thrilled, I have just taken three points against Leeds United, it’s actually six this season we have taken against them so I am thrilled we have won the game, but I am disappointed with how we played.
Is the win another sign of a step forward in mentality?
I think the biggest step is that the players are really disappointed with how they played tonight so that shows you the standards we have set most of the season. But that is a good sign that they are all on board with that and recognised it. It felt like we had three weeks off instead of ten days tonight we just didn’t seem to start the game quickly enough we didn’t seem to get around the ball. We were behind it for long periods, we grew into the first half and ended up with two goals and we were a bit unlucky not to make it three when we hit the most but we were also behind it in the first ten minutes when they had a couple of chances.
Was Jesse Lingard meant to take the penalty?
No, both of them have been practicing all week and they have been in competitions all week in training. As far as I was concerned I would have been happy for Declan to take it but Jesse had been practicing all week, so he was big enough and brave enough to take it and I wasn’t impressed by his penalty but I was impressed with the speed at which he got to the rebound and got it into the net, so I am pleased. He has had a big impact here and I am really pleased for him.
Will he be allowed to take the next one?
I’ll decide on that [later] and the reason is I would not want the opposition to know exactly who will be the next taker. I have some other people who are in contention as well.
How likely is it that Craig Dawson’s loan is made permanent?
There is a good chance although we are not quite there yet but there is a clause in it after a certain amount of games and we are getting very close to that number. His performances, his attitude and determination are certainly worthy of that anyway. We brought him in, it took him a while until the Southampton game I think it was before he got a start but that was because of the form of Fabian Balbuena and Angelo Ogbonna but he has come in and added goals to us as well and his experience has been really important and he is playing really well this season.
You said before the game you were like at Cheltenham an outsider for the top four, how are you feeling now?
I think our odds are just about the same, I am not sure if they have gone out or in after tonight’s performance. You might think after the win it looks as if this horse is coming into a bit of form but maybe if you watch the performance during the game you might say you are not too sure. So I don’t know what that tells you but that is me analysing it. But look we are in a good position we are really pleased we are up challenging the top boys. If you had given me Sheffield United at home, Tottenham at home, Leeds United at home and said ‘you’ll win the three games’ I would have said ‘well what a really good return that is.’ There is a five-game batch which included tonight, Manchester United and Arsenal who we have after that, plus the two games before and I saw that as a five-game batch which I thought looked like really difficult games before the international break and I had an idea of how many points we can take from them and we have just won two games, I know we lost at Man City the other week but out of those three we have won two which is a great return. We have now got Manchester United and Arsenal in that group of five games which I have been looking at and if we can get another win it would be a good return from this group of games.
It’s a shame Jesse can’t play against Manchester United then.
It is because he has been … I didn’t think it was his best game tonight but I didn’t think any of our forward players played as well as they should have done tonight but I felt that Jesse has made a big impact for us and he makes a big difference to us.
Can I ask you about said Benrahma’s performance I thought he had an excellent game until he came off in the 72nd minute?
I thought he played well in the first half at times, I thought he a couple of good shooting opportunities but I also was hoping he would have made the final pass and this is the thing we are looking for with him. I think he has grown into the Premier League, I think it is not easy for him because we are looking for so many things from him but he did a lot of good things. He ran the ball out, he took the ball under pressure but as I said earlier I didn’t particularly think the forward players played as well as they should have and I think if they had then we would have had a chance of scoring more goals and creating more chances.
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