Taylor knows Daggers cannot always rely on last-ditch defending

PUBLISHED: 16:00 10 April 2019

Dagenham & Redbridge manager Peter Taylor (pic: Ben Gaby/TGS Photo)

Dagenham & Redbridge manager Peter Taylor (pic: Ben Gaby/TGS Photo)

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Essex club kept overdue clean sheet against Barrow, but needed some timely interventions to keep Bluebirds at bay

Conor Wilkinson of Dagenham & Redbridge intercepts the ball against Barrow (pic: Ben Gaby/TGS Photo)Conor Wilkinson of Dagenham & Redbridge intercepts the ball against Barrow (pic: Ben Gaby/TGS Photo)

Peter Taylor was pleased to see Dagenham & Redbridge keep an overdue clean sheet against Barrow in the Vanarama National League, but knows his defence gave themselves too much work to do in the first half.

The Essex club had gone four games without a shutout prior to recording one at the weekend in a goalless draw against the Bluebirds.

Elliot Justham produced a stunning save midway through the first half to keep the visitors out, while both Manny Onariase and Kenny Clark made some timely tackles.

Some of the blocks Onariase and Clark needed to make, though, came after poor defensive work had allowed Barrow through on goal.

That is something that Taylor knows must improve, even if he was happy with the recovering tackles from his defenders.

“There were too many last-ditch challenges to make, too many sliding tackles with the last man that were a little risky,” said the one-time England caretaker manager.

“There were a few things that caused us some problems and defensively at times we looked OK, but at other times we looked a little bit open which is something we’ll chat about.”

After seeing his side look second best for much of the first half against Barrow, Taylor opted to make a double switch for Daggers at the break,

Skipper Ben Nunn and midfielder Jack Munns were both withdrawn, with Chike Kandi and Matt Robinson coming on at the interval.

And the manager of the Essex club revealed both switches were tactical, as opposed to being made because of injury.

“I wanted to change our shape and I thought Chike would have given us a bit more of threat down their left flank,” added the 66-year-old.

“Rhys Norrington-Evans was causing us problems and I wanted him to have a right winger to think about.”

Daggers were much improved after switching from a 5-3-2 formation to 4-4-2 at the start of the second half, though rarely had Barrow in absolute danger.

Taylor acknowledges his team struggled to trouble Barrow, but was nonetheless happy with the reaction from the Victoria Road outfit in the second period.

“I don’t think anyone has missed a sitter, but we had a bit more in attack than we did in the first half,” said the ex-Gillingham boss.

“Overall, I’m happy and I thought there were a lot better performances in the second half.”

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