Thompson: 'U's Deserved More'
Josh Thompson believes the U's were unfortunate that his headed goal just before the break on Saturday was ruled out.
With the U's heading into half-time off the back of an assured, controlled performance away at promotion-chasing Doncaster Rovers, Thompson headed home what would have been a morale boosting lead to take into the break.
However, the referee adjudged there to have been a foul by Anthony Wordsworth on Jamie McCombe and the goal wasn't to stand. Thompson, however, fails to see what was wrong with the goal.
'I thought it was a goal to be honest; it was a good ball, a good header and it's gone in, so I don't really see what's wrong with it,' he reflected to BBC Essex after the final whistle.
'I didn't hear any whistle or anything, it was only after it had gone in when I noticed the referee. I asked him if it was anything to do with me and he said that it was someone behind me, but everyone is pushing around in the box and our coaches can't see why it's a foul having looked at it, so only the referee really knows on that one.'
Rarely troubled in their own box, the U's were resolute and looked comfortable at the Keepmoat Stadium, and Thompson concurs that it would have been a well-deserved advantage to take into the interval.
'I think we did very well in the first half, we got the ball down, played it around and dominated a team that is now top of the league.
'It would have been a good time to score for us all, but we've done well today and it's just one of those things unfortunately.'
Joe Dunne's side were eventually dealt a cruel blow with minutes remaining, as David Cotterill cut inside the U's right hand side and curled a wonderful finish inside the far post and, agreeing with his manager, Thompson assures us that a class finish makes defeat no easier to stomach.
He said: 'It was a great strike. He's cut inside and there's not much Mark Cousins can do with it going just inside the post, but on another day he shanks that one wide, doesn't he?
The quality of the finish makes no difference to us. We've defended well for eighty-five minutes, everyone has put in a shift and it isn't because we've fallen apart. You can't ask any more of the lads and it's just not what we needed.'
The U's had a very young side out on the pitch with the likes of Thompson himself, Drey Wright, Gavin Massey and new recruit, Dominic Samuel, making up the eleven, but the young centre-half explained that it brings energy to the side and suits the way Dunne has set his stall out.
'It's very youthful but it brings energy and that's a big part of the gaffer's plans. He wants to get onto the ball and keep it moving; he never tells us to slow it down but rather it's always attack, attack, get the ball and keep it moving.
'Dominic has trained with us over the last couple of days and he's looked strong, sharp and fitted in well with all of the boys, so I think he'll do well with us.
'We do still have experience in there with the likes of Michael Rose and Kem Izzet, and they'll keep us going.'
The game on Saturday was Josh's first as a permanent player with the U's, having extended his loan deal from January 1st into a full-time switch from Portsmouth.
He explains: 'The idea was always to get a permanent deal, I spoke to the manager before I came down and it's ideal that we've managed to get something sorted out.
'We all know that football is a lot more complicated than that, but I've got something for the next eighteen months now and I'm over the moon with that.'
Despite the club record-equalling eighth defeat in succession on Saturday, Josh also insisted that he has joined a side that will turn their fortunes around.
'I don't think anyone who has just watched that game can say we're a club in the position we ought to be in.
'Massive cheers to the fans who stayed and clapped at the end; they can see it and we'll turn it around. We'll make sure that we turn it around.'
January now brings up a run of crunch fixtures for the U's against sides in and around us in the table.
Home games with Scunthorpe and Walsall are surrounded by trips to Hartlepool and Josh's former side, Portsmouth, and all U's fans are well aware of how important this month could prove to be in the quest for survival.
Thompson, however, likes to take each game as it comes.
'I'm not a massive believer in looking too far ahead at the fixtures,' he explains. 'The manager has said it before and said it again today that he wants a team who can go anywhere and believe they can beat anyone, so I don't really look too much at the fixtures; we're playing against an eleven and we'll try and get the better of them to get some results.'
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