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Interviews

Maamria: "It Was A Very Good Away Performance"

24 February 2020

Latics picked up a point in a 2-2 draw against Leyton Orient on Saturday and Head Coach Dino Maamria gave his thought on the match.

The Head Coach was pleased with the display from his side and takes plenty of positives from the game.

"I thought that it was a very good away performance, two good teams in difficult conditions with the wind and four goals from set plays. I think that both sides showed a lot of desire to win the game and their goalkeeper made an unbelievable save towards the end from Danny Rowe's header to deny us the three points.

"I thought that a point was the least we deserved, but overall, it's a huge step forward from our last two away performances as we showed a lot of resilience and quality with the ball as well.

"Defensively I thought we were very solid and I don't think that Woodsy (Gary Woods) made a save throughout the game from open play, but the only disappointing bit is that we didn't deal with the corners in the right way which we have been doing recently, that's probably the only negative."

Maamria believes that the players have grown as a team, but admits he was frustrated with the manner of how the second goal was conceded.

"We're growing as a team; I think that we've got a decent team and if you look at our bench and you can see the strength there. At this stage of the season, they're in a good place Orient and both teams are in a different situation since the reverse fixture in December.

"There is a lot of positives there, the togetherness of the players and the bounce back and it's easy when you go away from home, like we've done before, you concede that first goal and crumble, but we didn't do that today and we've gone on and scored the second as well.

" I'm disappointed that at half-time the emphasis was on that first 15 minutes because I knew that Orient were going to come out all guns and blazing and we had to manage that first 15 minutes and it's frustrating to give away a cheap and silly free-kick in the corner, although it didn't look like a free-kick, we gave the referee a decision to make and they have the quality to punish us."

Both Latics goals came from corners and the gaffer explains that the squad focuses on utilising set-pieces throughout the week.

"We're huge on set plays especially this time of the year when the pitch is not as fluid as you want it to be, so we want to make sure we capitalise on those set plays.

"We've got players that attack the ball really well and fair play to Jonny Smith, Gevaro (Nepomuceno) and few other players who have been staying behind and practicing their delivery and the delivery is the key, when we have the right delivery we've got good enough players to attack those balls."

There were two changes to side against Leyton Orient and Maamria was delighted with the solidity that his team showed throughout.

"We changed the team slightly, Cameron (Borthwick-Jackson) had a baby this week and he didn't have enough rest so we played Zak (Mills) there and I thought Zak did really well at left-back.

"The back four were solid and I thought we were solid throughout and the work rate of the team was really good. In the first-half we had a lot of chances and we could have punished them more especially in transition, but we didn't do that.

"Overall, we scored two goals away from home and when you look at it when you score two goals away from home you should really win the game, but we didn't do that although it's a positive step forward."

Danny Rowe and Zak Dearnley are forming a good partnership up top for Latics and Maamria was full of praise the new strike force.

"Those two we've got to remember Rowe has been playing in non-league and he's still catching up with the League Two level and Dearnley has been out seven months so those two are still growing.

"Zak (Dearnley) got two and I thought that Rowey could have easily got two with a chance late in the first-half where he just missed the top corner and the chance late in the second-half, so both of them really deserved to be on the scoresheet. The partnership going forward is very pleasing and the more they play together the better they will get."


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