Albion's under-23 coach was pleased with the application of his players.
Brighton & Hove Albion under-23 coach Simon Rusk was delighted with the overall performance of his players in their 2-0 defeat to Southend United in the Checkatrade Trophy last night.
Rusk felt his players more than matched the League One Shrimpers over the course of the game, but admitted they lacked a clinical edge in front of goal.
He said, “It was a new competition and I’m not sure how the levels compare between a League One team and an under-23 side, but I thought we gave a very good account of ourselves.
“We arrived in their final third a lot in the first 20 to 25 minutes and the biggest disappointment is we haven’t worked the keeper enough. We got into some good areas, but we weren’t aggressive enough.
“I was generally very happy with how we acquitted ourselves; there was a little bit of luck with their second goal and the first goal is something we feel was avoidable.
“Nonetheless, it was a great experience for our under-23 players."
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Rusk explained that lessons will be learned from the defeat heading into the next Checkatrade Trophy match at Stevenage in October.
“We prepared and set up like we normally would for a game. It was business as normal and we wanted to be competitive and cause them problems with what we’re good at.
“We’re a good passing side and want to play our way to the other end of the pitch, but we didn’t hurt their box enough. That’s something we definitely need to think about going into the next Checkatrade Trophy game.
“Obviously a bit of physicality comes into it too. That was a factor all over the pitch. In another three or four years these lads will look very different physically and will have a lot more about them physically, technically and tactically.”
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