21 March 2023

Steven Schumacher a happy man after ‘rubbish’ performance takes Plymouth top

21 March 2023

Steven Schumacher knows his Plymouth Argyle side had an off day but the 2-0 win at Accrington that took them to the top of League One was all that mattered.

A deflected Matt Butcher strike in the 14th minute and a late Conor Grant goal sent Argyle into top spot after Sheffield Wednesday lost to Barnsley.

Accrington had Mo Sangare sent off in the 51st minute for two bookable offences – their sixth League One dismissal of the season – and it was a third successive loss for John Coleman’s men which keeps them in the bottom four.

Schumacher said: “I feel delighted, it’s another huge three points and that’s all that matters at this stage of the season.

“It was a game where I was scratching my head. I don’t think we made two consecutive passes to anyone in our shirt. It was one of those nights, it was tough conditions, the performance was rubbish but the result was outstanding.

“Even with 10 men they didn’t make it easy for us, they didn’t let us settle and on another night they could have got something from the game .

“We were on the end of a few decisions and we got a huge stroke of luck for the first goal but we get out of here with maximum points.

“The players haven’t played brilliantly but they have put in 100 per cent effort and they have kept another clean sheet. They have sent the fans home happy with their club back at the top of the league.”

Coleman praised his side despite the loss.

He said: “I am proud of our players, we were outstanding in difficult circumstances.

“We took the game to them, even with 10 men, and we were unfortunate not to get a goal.

“I don’t think we deserved to lose the game on the balance of play. We just needed a break in the box which didn’t come for us. There were a lot of fantastic performances out there.

“I have been a manager for 24 years and I have never seen a team on the end of so many contentious decisions go against us like they did tonight.

“I am not under any illusions, there is no agenda, the referee has just got a lot of things wrong. In my opinion, he had an off night.

“We didn’t get the rub of the green and they had the luck – their first goal put us on the back foot and you can’t have a bigger fluke than that.

“The lads have shown we are not going to go down with a whimper, they showed fighting spirit.”

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