Steve Evans' Peterborough United can emulate Fergie's promotion-winning squad
Peterborough United manager Steve Evans believes his side can emulate the League One promotion-winning Posh team of 2010-11.
Darren Ferguson inherited a free-scoring team with defensive limitations midway through that campaign and Evans is managing a team with similar traits. Posh have scored 28 goals in their opening 12 League One matches - the best in the division - but they have conceded 19 goals, the worst tally in the top half of the table with the exception of tomorrow’s opponents Scunthorpe (October 13).
“I don’t care how we get up as long as we do,” Evans stated. “And Darren’s team showed that attacking football while taking a risk defensively can be successful.
“There are many things to be positive about this season, but many people prefer to dwell on the negatives which at the moment is our defensive record.”
Posh scored a remarkable 106 goals in the 2010-11 season, the last time the club won a promotion, but also conceded 75 goals. The bottom two teams conceded fewer.
But Evans is confident his beleaguered back four will come good sooner rather than later.
“I said in the summer there would be inconsistent performances at the start of the season from a young, new group,” Evans stated. “And it’s happening with our defending at the moment.
“We have suffered by making too many individual mistakes and by having too many lapses in confidence.
“It’s obviously something we need to sort out quickly. We need to work harder to stop the ball getting into our penalty area for a start.
“But this is the same group of defenders who were rightly earning plaudits in the first two months of the season.
“We have scored lots of goals and won some exciting games, but we have also had spells in those games when we have come under heavy pressure and the defenders have had to stand firm. They usually did and I have no doubts that form will return.
“It has to as, although we are certain to keep scoring goals, we can’t keep having to score three goals to win a game.”
Posh are likely to keep the same back four and goalkeeper for the game at Scunthorpe. Goalkeeper Conor O’Malley, centre-back Josy Yorwerth and left-back Tyler Denton have been struggling with illness and injury.
Evans admits he has a tough decision on who to play up front tomorrow. Jason Cummings and Matt Godden were reunited and both scored in the Checkatrade Trophy tie with Brighton on Tuesday.
Marcus Maddison was due to return to training today (October 12) after a bout of illness.