The ArgusWard highlights importance of win as Albion get back in play-off race (From The Argus)

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Ward highlights importance of win as Albion get back in play-off race

The Argus: Stephen Ward" Stephen Ward"

Albion defender Stephen Ward has highlighted the importance of Albion’s 1-0 win at home to Doncaster yesterday.

The Seagulls had taken one point out of nine from three tough away games before the visit of Paul Dickov’s Rovers.

It had seen them lose ground in the race for a play-off place.

However, the win lifted the Seagulls back up to eighth, four points off the final play-off spot with a game in hand ahead of Tuesday’s visit of Leeds.

On-loan Wolves left-back Ward said: “We were disappointed to lose at Watford last weekend. The table didn’t look too great in terms of our position and how many points we were outside the play-offs but we knew we had a lot of home games coming up and if we can take maximum points in as many of those as possible we will be in with a chance.

“It was a nevy performance. We haven’t had the best results over the last few weeks and it was good to get back on home soil.

“It was good to get the win but there were times when we felt it should have been more comfortable.

“We had a lot of the ball in the first half but credit to them, they came with a game plan and stuck to it pretty well but it was a good result in the end."

Comments (14)

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12:08pm Sun 9 Feb 14

Weploughandmow says...

Thought Ward had an excellent game yesterday - he's proved to be a very good signing. I liked the line-up yesterday and although we struggled to score (again) I hope to see similar attacking line-ups in the future. I think Rodriguez and Ulloa could strike up a good partnership. At least one of March/ Lualua/ Buckley should start every game, and Ince - I thought he was immense yesterday. Our own version of Yaya Toure.
Thought Ward had an excellent game yesterday - he's proved to be a very good signing. I liked the line-up yesterday and although we struggled to score (again) I hope to see similar attacking line-ups in the future. I think Rodriguez and Ulloa could strike up a good partnership. At least one of March/ Lualua/ Buckley should start every game, and Ince - I thought he was immense yesterday. Our own version of Yaya Toure. Weploughandmow
  • Score: 14

12:25pm Sun 9 Feb 14

VegasSeagull says...

I think that there are several points that make this win important. Ridriguez and Stephens making their home debut, Solly making his first start, all three will have gained in confidence after this win. Ulloa scoring the winning goal will have done him some good. As Ward says, the three points are a big boost. The crowd went home happy, Oscar showed yet again that he is ready willing and able to make astute changes where needed or when forced upon him. We continued our unbeaten run at home and this gives us a big boost for Tuesday night's match against Leeds. We won and kept a clean sheet, never a bad thing. Yep, a very important three points.
I think that there are several points that make this win important. Ridriguez and Stephens making their home debut, Solly making his first start, all three will have gained in confidence after this win. Ulloa scoring the winning goal will have done him some good. As Ward says, the three points are a big boost. The crowd went home happy, Oscar showed yet again that he is ready willing and able to make astute changes where needed or when forced upon him. We continued our unbeaten run at home and this gives us a big boost for Tuesday night's match against Leeds. We won and kept a clean sheet, never a bad thing. Yep, a very important three points. VegasSeagull
  • Score: 6

12:36pm Sun 9 Feb 14

AlanDuffy says...

Fantastic cross for the goal, Wardy.....the one bit of quality in the game.
Fantastic cross for the goal, Wardy.....the one bit of quality in the game. AlanDuffy
  • Score: 6

1:23pm Sun 9 Feb 14

championshipgull says...

Agree with Ward totally and yes a great ball in from him . The way we played it should have been more comfortable but there are fine lines in the championship. Leeds are going to be a different animal and I can’t see Ward getting forward much, so time for someone from midfield to step up and provide the killer ball.
Agree with Ward totally and yes a great ball in from him . The way we played it should have been more comfortable but there are fine lines in the championship. Leeds are going to be a different animal and I can’t see Ward getting forward much, so time for someone from midfield to step up and provide the killer ball. championshipgull
  • Score: 6

1:51pm Sun 9 Feb 14

fratsomrover says...

I also agree with Wardy as the win is good psychologically as it arrests the run of poor results. His contribution both in attack and defence is valuable and it was a great ball in for the winning goal.
I hope we keep the same attacking impetus v Leeds although I didn't think Rodriguez's contribution was that outstanding. He was an extra body up front, and the chance he got on goal in the first half, was lost by him trying to take an extra touch which narrowed the angle and his shot was beat away. I wouldn't say he posed as much as a threat as Lua Lua does, and Kaz might feel a little miffed about not starting given his contribution in the past few weeks.
It's early days for him though, so he might get better. I just felt he offered little threat.
March was good. He's quick and inventive and can only get better with a run in the team. He does create chances and, of course, he does have a potent shot on him. It'll be interesting when WB is fully fit.
Leeds will prove a tougher test than Donny, but I hope we start brightly, press high up the pitch and get an early goal.
For all the stats about our sound defensive record, Donny did create a few chances and the Leeds forward line will not be so wasteful.
I'm concerned GG at the heart of our defense is not as assured as he has been in the past. MU is the key man now for me now and I wouldn't be surprised to see Dunk given a chance to play alongside him before the season is out.
We need another win Tuesday, so let's hope we can capitalise on yesterday's 3 points to push on and secure another 3.
I also agree with Wardy as the win is good psychologically as it arrests the run of poor results. His contribution both in attack and defence is valuable and it was a great ball in for the winning goal. I hope we keep the same attacking impetus v Leeds although I didn't think Rodriguez's contribution was that outstanding. He was an extra body up front, and the chance he got on goal in the first half, was lost by him trying to take an extra touch which narrowed the angle and his shot was beat away. I wouldn't say he posed as much as a threat as Lua Lua does, and Kaz might feel a little miffed about not starting given his contribution in the past few weeks. It's early days for him though, so he might get better. I just felt he offered little threat. March was good. He's quick and inventive and can only get better with a run in the team. He does create chances and, of course, he does have a potent shot on him. It'll be interesting when WB is fully fit. Leeds will prove a tougher test than Donny, but I hope we start brightly, press high up the pitch and get an early goal. For all the stats about our sound defensive record, Donny did create a few chances and the Leeds forward line will not be so wasteful. I'm concerned GG at the heart of our defense is not as assured as he has been in the past. MU is the key man now for me now and I wouldn't be surprised to see Dunk given a chance to play alongside him before the season is out. We need another win Tuesday, so let's hope we can capitalise on yesterday's 3 points to push on and secure another 3. fratsomrover
  • Score: 3

2:10pm Sun 9 Feb 14

kwaidam says...

Weploughandmow wrote:
Thought Ward had an excellent game yesterday - he's proved to be a very good signing. I liked the line-up yesterday and although we struggled to score (again) I hope to see similar attacking line-ups in the future. I think Rodriguez and Ulloa could strike up a good partnership. At least one of March/ Lualua/ Buckley should start every game, and Ince - I thought he was immense yesterday. Our own version of Yaya Toure.
absolutely spot on..
Would like to see leo take up better positions a bit more often now rather than drift out to the wings to pick up the ball. Now he has got his goal, and it was superbly taken, maybe he will have more confidence to stay where he is needed... in the middle. Great to see Orlandi getting back up to speed, he is total class.. And as for Ince, what a find. I am glad it was Bridders who went, and not Rohan. He gives us real muscle and presence in midfeld, something we have not had for a while. i lost count of the times he broke up play or held on to the ball when he had players around him.
As for the play-offs, it' not the be-all and end-all. A top eight finish in what is a very strong division would still be a fine achievement on the limited budget we operate on. It's not that long ago we were fighting against relegation from League One. We've come a long way.
[quote][p][bold]Weploughandmow[/bold] wrote: Thought Ward had an excellent game yesterday - he's proved to be a very good signing. I liked the line-up yesterday and although we struggled to score (again) I hope to see similar attacking line-ups in the future. I think Rodriguez and Ulloa could strike up a good partnership. At least one of March/ Lualua/ Buckley should start every game, and Ince - I thought he was immense yesterday. Our own version of Yaya Toure.[/p][/quote]absolutely spot on.. Would like to see leo take up better positions a bit more often now rather than drift out to the wings to pick up the ball. Now he has got his goal, and it was superbly taken, maybe he will have more confidence to stay where he is needed... in the middle. Great to see Orlandi getting back up to speed, he is total class.. And as for Ince, what a find. I am glad it was Bridders who went, and not Rohan. He gives us real muscle and presence in midfeld, something we have not had for a while. i lost count of the times he broke up play or held on to the ball when he had players around him. As for the play-offs, it' not the be-all and end-all. A top eight finish in what is a very strong division would still be a fine achievement on the limited budget we operate on. It's not that long ago we were fighting against relegation from League One. We've come a long way. kwaidam
  • Score: 9

2:36pm Sun 9 Feb 14

Joel'sGrandad says...

The performance but more importantly the 3 points has given everyone a huge boost. Leeds on Tuesday will be a much tougher game and we'll have to be much tighter defensively or we will be punished. Because of what is going on at Leeds behind the scenes Brian McDermott will work on a siege mentality with his players. It will be tough but we can win this one with an attacking formation to pressure them. UTA
The performance but more importantly the 3 points has given everyone a huge boost. Leeds on Tuesday will be a much tougher game and we'll have to be much tighter defensively or we will be punished. Because of what is going on at Leeds behind the scenes Brian McDermott will work on a siege mentality with his players. It will be tough but we can win this one with an attacking formation to pressure them. UTA Joel'sGrandad
  • Score: 4

3:03pm Sun 9 Feb 14

VegasSeagull says...

To be fair to Rodriguez I don't think that he has played much football prior to us signing him, as with most players he might need a couple of matches to find his game.
To be fair to Rodriguez I don't think that he has played much football prior to us signing him, as with most players he might need a couple of matches to find his game. VegasSeagull
  • Score: 2

5:15pm Sun 9 Feb 14

gordongull says...

Must admit I thought the play-offs had gone, but there appears to still be one place up for grabs.
There is little room for manoeuvre, and we will need at least two points per game over the long run-in.

For anyone unsure of Oscar's credentials, I'll repeat my comment on the 'Ulloa earns Albion victory' thread where the issue was raised:

Last season during his only season in charge, Oscar took Maccabi Tel Aviv to the Israeli title, their only successful campaign since 2002/2003.
Before that he had been a member of the coaching staff for the Catalan national team under Johan Cruyff
This compares favourably to Gus whose only managerial experience before being appointed by B&HA was as assistant manager at Swindon and Leeds, and as a coach at Spurs.
Oscar knows what he is doing, and more importantly, his ambitions are not running ahead of the financial constraints which have been placed on the club.
Must admit I thought the play-offs had gone, but there appears to still be one place up for grabs. There is little room for manoeuvre, and we will need at least two points per game over the long run-in. For anyone unsure of Oscar's credentials, I'll repeat my comment on the 'Ulloa earns Albion victory' thread where the issue was raised: Last season during his only season in charge, Oscar took Maccabi Tel Aviv to the Israeli title, their only successful campaign since 2002/2003. Before that he had been a member of the coaching staff for the Catalan national team under Johan Cruyff This compares favourably to Gus whose only managerial experience before being appointed by B&HA was as assistant manager at Swindon and Leeds, and as a coach at Spurs. Oscar knows what he is doing, and more importantly, his ambitions are not running ahead of the financial constraints which have been placed on the club. gordongull
  • Score: 9

5:31pm Sun 9 Feb 14

Chi Gull says...

We are now one point better off than at same stage last season - so why not feel positive? I thought Ward and Bruno were very good yesterday. Ince and March not far behind. Rodriguez looked promising and Stephens some good and bad moments, but he may take a little time to settle. Very few have mentioned Orlandi, who I thought looked more involved and influential and getting back to his best. What was good was the number of promising situations we created, albeit the final ball was often a disappointment. I don't think we went defensive when we scored. For some reason we suddenly looked nervous and jittery and forgot how to keep the ball. How Dickov could think Doncaster were unlucky beats me. They had one good chance. We had several and largely dominated the game without testing their keeper enough.
We are now one point better off than at same stage last season - so why not feel positive? I thought Ward and Bruno were very good yesterday. Ince and March not far behind. Rodriguez looked promising and Stephens some good and bad moments, but he may take a little time to settle. Very few have mentioned Orlandi, who I thought looked more involved and influential and getting back to his best. What was good was the number of promising situations we created, albeit the final ball was often a disappointment. I don't think we went defensive when we scored. For some reason we suddenly looked nervous and jittery and forgot how to keep the ball. How Dickov could think Doncaster were unlucky beats me. They had one good chance. We had several and largely dominated the game without testing their keeper enough. Chi Gull
  • Score: 4

6:23pm Sun 9 Feb 14

JCORP1955 says...

Although we should definitely have converted more opportunities yesterday given the vast amount of possesson we had and the fact that Donaster were poor , what I found most refreshing was the sheer number of genuine crosses we got into the 6yard box from behind their defence using the pace and width we had throughout March/Rodriguez/Kaz/
Ward etc maybe as many as 15-20 !
I am sure the goals will come and my only criticism /suggestion is if we are not going to play a genune 2up top then we have to find a way of getting an extra man in the box close to Leo when the ball comes in .We just have to get the wide man from the opposite side the ball is coming in from to drive into the box or get on of the centre midfielders there .Easier said than done I know but we know that goals are more often created in partnerships than individual moments of genius
Although we should definitely have converted more opportunities yesterday given the vast amount of possesson we had and the fact that Donaster were poor , what I found most refreshing was the sheer number of genuine crosses we got into the 6yard box from behind their defence using the pace and width we had throughout March/Rodriguez/Kaz/ Ward etc maybe as many as 15-20 ! I am sure the goals will come and my only criticism /suggestion is if we are not going to play a genune 2up top then we have to find a way of getting an extra man in the box close to Leo when the ball comes in .We just have to get the wide man from the opposite side the ball is coming in from to drive into the box or get on of the centre midfielders there .Easier said than done I know but we know that goals are more often created in partnerships than individual moments of genius JCORP1955
  • Score: 4

6:36pm Sun 9 Feb 14

JCORP1955 says...

Although we should definitely have converted more opportunities yesterday given the vast amount of possesson we had and the fact that Donaster were poor , what I found most refreshing was the sheer number of genuine crosses we got into the 6yard box from behind their defence using the pace and width we had throughout March/Rodriguez/Kaz/
Ward etc maybe as many as 15-20 !
I am sure the goals will come and my only criticism /suggestion is if we are not going to play a genune 2up top then we have to find a way of getting an extra man in the box close to Leo when the ball comes in .We just have to get the wide man from the opposite side the ball is coming in from to drive into the box or get on of the centre midfielders there .Easier said than done I know but we know that goals are more often created in partnerships than individual moments of genius
Although we should definitely have converted more opportunities yesterday given the vast amount of possesson we had and the fact that Donaster were poor , what I found most refreshing was the sheer number of genuine crosses we got into the 6yard box from behind their defence using the pace and width we had throughout March/Rodriguez/Kaz/ Ward etc maybe as many as 15-20 ! I am sure the goals will come and my only criticism /suggestion is if we are not going to play a genune 2up top then we have to find a way of getting an extra man in the box close to Leo when the ball comes in .We just have to get the wide man from the opposite side the ball is coming in from to drive into the box or get on of the centre midfielders there .Easier said than done I know but we know that goals are more often created in partnerships than individual moments of genius JCORP1955
  • Score: 1

7:40pm Sun 9 Feb 14

wiseman of hove says...

fratsomrover wrote:
I also agree with Wardy as the win is good psychologically as it arrests the run of poor results. His contribution both in attack and defence is valuable and it was a great ball in for the winning goal.
I hope we keep the same attacking impetus v Leeds although I didn't think Rodriguez's contribution was that outstanding. He was an extra body up front, and the chance he got on goal in the first half, was lost by him trying to take an extra touch which narrowed the angle and his shot was beat away. I wouldn't say he posed as much as a threat as Lua Lua does, and Kaz might feel a little miffed about not starting given his contribution in the past few weeks.
It's early days for him though, so he might get better. I just felt he offered little threat.
March was good. He's quick and inventive and can only get better with a run in the team. He does create chances and, of course, he does have a potent shot on him. It'll be interesting when WB is fully fit.
Leeds will prove a tougher test than Donny, but I hope we start brightly, press high up the pitch and get an early goal.
For all the stats about our sound defensive record, Donny did create a few chances and the Leeds forward line will not be so wasteful.
I'm concerned GG at the heart of our defense is not as assured as he has been in the past. MU is the key man now for me now and I wouldn't be surprised to see Dunk given a chance to play alongside him before the season is out.
We need another win Tuesday, so let's hope we can capitalise on yesterday's 3 points to push on and secure another 3.
Yes, I'm surprised how many fellow posters have gone 'overboard' over Rodriquez. I'm sure he is going to be an asset with his speed but at this moment in time, it is certainly LuaLua who poses the wing threat. As Chi Gull has highlighted, surprisingly little mention of Orlandi's contribution (which I mentioned earlier on another thread). Some lovely touches in the second half and saved I think, for Tuesday. He is in the starting eleven for me every time. Thank heavens for Upson because Greer is looking decidedly average, including nervous distribution. As far as Dunk is concerned, he seems to be a 'left sided' centre back and wonder if he can make the move over to the right?
[quote][p][bold]fratsomrover[/bold] wrote: I also agree with Wardy as the win is good psychologically as it arrests the run of poor results. His contribution both in attack and defence is valuable and it was a great ball in for the winning goal. I hope we keep the same attacking impetus v Leeds although I didn't think Rodriguez's contribution was that outstanding. He was an extra body up front, and the chance he got on goal in the first half, was lost by him trying to take an extra touch which narrowed the angle and his shot was beat away. I wouldn't say he posed as much as a threat as Lua Lua does, and Kaz might feel a little miffed about not starting given his contribution in the past few weeks. It's early days for him though, so he might get better. I just felt he offered little threat. March was good. He's quick and inventive and can only get better with a run in the team. He does create chances and, of course, he does have a potent shot on him. It'll be interesting when WB is fully fit. Leeds will prove a tougher test than Donny, but I hope we start brightly, press high up the pitch and get an early goal. For all the stats about our sound defensive record, Donny did create a few chances and the Leeds forward line will not be so wasteful. I'm concerned GG at the heart of our defense is not as assured as he has been in the past. MU is the key man now for me now and I wouldn't be surprised to see Dunk given a chance to play alongside him before the season is out. We need another win Tuesday, so let's hope we can capitalise on yesterday's 3 points to push on and secure another 3.[/p][/quote]Yes, I'm surprised how many fellow posters have gone 'overboard' over Rodriquez. I'm sure he is going to be an asset with his speed but at this moment in time, it is certainly LuaLua who poses the wing threat. As Chi Gull has highlighted, surprisingly little mention of Orlandi's contribution (which I mentioned earlier on another thread). Some lovely touches in the second half and saved I think, for Tuesday. He is in the starting eleven for me every time. Thank heavens for Upson because Greer is looking decidedly average, including nervous distribution. As far as Dunk is concerned, he seems to be a 'left sided' centre back and wonder if he can make the move over to the right? wiseman of hove
  • Score: 3

9:38pm Sun 9 Feb 14

Chi Gull says...

I don't understand people saying it wasn't really two up front. There were more than a few occasions when both Rodriguez and Ulloa were straying offside in their eagerness to receive the ball in a forward position. In fact if anything there were too many players eager to get forward against Doncaster's high line meaning the ball had to go sideways or backwards while they got back on side. However, the pint is we were trying to go forwards in numbers, with Orlandi March and others joining the front two.

Interestingly Swansea played with two up front against Cardiff in the 1st half yesterday - and didn't look like scoring. Changed at half time to 1 up front and scored 3 !! Playing two strikers up front is no guarantee of goals. We have to play the formation which best compliments our style of play and the players we have got.
I don't understand people saying it wasn't really two up front. There were more than a few occasions when both Rodriguez and Ulloa were straying offside in their eagerness to receive the ball in a forward position. In fact if anything there were too many players eager to get forward against Doncaster's high line meaning the ball had to go sideways or backwards while they got back on side. However, the pint is we were trying to go forwards in numbers, with Orlandi March and others joining the front two. Interestingly Swansea played with two up front against Cardiff in the 1st half yesterday - and didn't look like scoring. Changed at half time to 1 up front and scored 3 !! Playing two strikers up front is no guarantee of goals. We have to play the formation which best compliments our style of play and the players we have got. Chi Gull
  • Score: 4

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