Back-to-back Posh wins brings the confidence back

Posh striker Kyle Vassell is thwarted by Yeovil 'keeper Jed Steer. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.
Posh striker Kyle Vassell is thwarted by Yeovil 'keeper Jed Steer. Photo: Joe Dent/theposh.com.

Yeovil win reaction: Peterborough United manager Darren Ferguson can see the confidence returning to his playing squad.

Posh beat Yeovil 1-0 at The ABAX Stadium today (January 31) to record back-to-back wins in League One for the first time since October. Harry Beautyman claimed his first goal for the club in the first half and that was enough to move Posh up to 11th place, just two points off a play-off place.

Match report: Posh 1, Yeovil 0: You Beauty! Harry wins game for Posh

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The match was far from a classic on a horribly heavy playing surface, but Ferguson praised his side’s ability to adapt to the difficult conditions before sealing their first League One home win since October 18.

Ferguson said: “We always felt it would be a battle on this sort of pitch, and with the expected weather conditions, and that’s how it turned out.

“It makes pure football hard, but there is still a certain skill level required. You have to play angled passes and diagonal passes and try and get defenders turning and we did it very well in the first half.

“We started slowly and Scott Loach had to make a good save, but after 10 minutes or so we got on top and we should really have been more than one goal in front at half-time as we were very dominant.

“They were always going to have a spell of pressure in the second-half, but we came through it well. We defended well, the goalkeeper looked solid again and we also missed a couple of great chances to score.

“Winning was everything today though. It was important we found a way to win at home and it was important that we built on last week’s win. It’s still only small steps we are taking, but we are heading in the right direction and winning will make us more confident in the future.”

Ferguson revealed that Marcus Maddison had been ill again in the build-up to the match and that Joe Newell (hip) and Christian Burgess (calf) had barely trained so he was pleased to be able to name the same strating line-up and substitutes for the first time this season.

“I was adamant that I was going to pick the same 18,” Ferguson added. “Consistency of selection will be crucial for us now and hopefully we won’t pick up any more injuries. We’ve surely had our fair share already this season.

“Harry Beautyman was very good again and it was good for me to see three young lads in him, Jermaine Anderson and Joe Newell playing the final 10 minutes in central midfield.

“The clean sheet was important and good for our goalkeeper who looked very solid as did the back three.

“It’s hard work on that pitch, but today showed why we need four strikers. Conor Washington and Kyle Vassell, who could easily have scored a couple of goals, ran themselves into the ground and then I could bring two fresh ones on. Luke James was very good when he came on, but Aaron needs a bit of fitness work. We’ll work him hard next week and he’ll be in a much better place as a result.

“Training becomes a lot easier when you are winning games. We’ll be in a very positive frame of mind for the next game.”

Yeovil manager Gary Johnson, who was making his first return to the club since he was sacked in January 2011, admitted Posh’s extra quality up front made the difference.

Johnson, whose team slumped to the bottom of the table with this defeat, said: “Scoring the first goal on that pitch was always going to be important and we had the first chance early on, but we were poor overall in the first-half and the quality they have up front enabled them to get in front.

“We had a go in the second-half, but we didn’t work their goalkeeper enough. The conditions were tough for both sides though, It was always going to be a game of long balls.”

Posh are next in action at Fleetwood next Saturday (February 7) when Ferguson hopes he will have a couple of new signings in his squad. He wants to add a central defender and a midfielder before Monday’s (February 2, 11pm) transfer deadline, but the refusal of unwanted players Tyrone Barnett and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing to leave the club is proving problematical.

“The chairman knows who I want,” Ferguson stated. “But players refusing to leave when we’ve set deals up is causing us a problem. Ideally I want two players in, but in all honesty I can’t see anything happening for us until the loan transfer window re-opens in a couple of weeks.

“One of the players we want out is a big deal for the club because of the fee involved and the money we would get off the wage bill, but we can’t hold a gun to any player’s head. We have to respect their decisions.”

Have your Posh say: by emailing alan.swann@peterboroughtoday.co.uk, or on Twitter @PTAlanSwann or tweet using #PUFC

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