Roberto Martinez felt his side did everything but find the back of the net in Tuesday night’s Capital One Cup defeat against Bradford City at the DW Stadium.
Enjoying the lion’s share of possession and winning twelve corners to the Bantams’ two, Latics created chance after chance throughout the 120 minutes of football that preceded the penalty shoot-out, but were unable to find the back of Matt Duke’s net.
The visitors seized the opportunity from the spot and went on to record a 4-2 win on penalties, and Martinez spoke of how his team paid the price for not converting their opportunities to goals, saying:
“It was a disappointing night because it’s a competition we wanted to go far in and were looked forward to the first home cup tie in a long time.
“I felt we did everything we had to in terms of the performance needed, showing patience against a unified and organised Bradford City side and creating numerous chances.
“We had a goal disallowed early on but continued to get into good situations that we just failed to capitalise upon, but we never lost that composure in our display and kept a clean sheet for the 120 minutes.
“Ultimately when you create that amount of chances and don’t hit the back of the net it becomes very difficult to win a football match.
“Then, when you go into a penalty shoot-out the luck is out of your hands and it wasn’t going to be our night.
“The shoot-out is the perfect assessment of the evening; the two most assured takers were the ones who missed their chances and that was typical of the night.
“But we congratulate Bradford City and wish them well in the next round whilst looking internally at how we can continue to improve.”
Danny Redmond and Fraser Fyvie were both handed their first Club starts in the fourth round tie, and whilst the Gaffer explained that this was an experience which will enhance their development, he couldn’t overlook the overriding feeling of disappointment in the Dressing Room after the game.
He said: “They are young players and it’s important that they’re given opportunities to play. They know the football concepts of the team and the way we want to play the game, and they’ll be better players now than they were before the game.
“But it’s difficult to look into personal performances when the overriding emotion is one of disappointment for not having the clinical touches that would have won us the game.
“The whole team though are very disappointed as you can imagine, we had players in the team who were desperate for minutes on the pitch and to make an impact on the team.
“But we’ll look back on exiting the cup having not lost the game in normal time and after being the better side throughout the match, but just lacking the final touch.”
To see the interview in full [click here].