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'We didn't let our heads drop'

9 March 2013

City striker Leon Clarke marks winner against former club Scunthorpe with muted reaction

Leon Clarke didn’t respond with a celebration when he scored the winner against his former club Scunthorpe United.

But the striker felt it was the Sky Blues’ reaction to an early set-back that helped them ensure Steven Pressley’s first game as manager ended with victory.

City were in a sticky situation when they fell behind to Akpo Sodje’s header after just eight minutes on a puddled pitch at Glanford Park.

But City’s reply was to take control of the game with their passing and Carl Baker equalised in the last minute of the first half before Clarke headed the winner in the 76th minute.

He might not have celebrated, out of respect for the Iron, but the significance of the result, and the performance, was not lost on the striker.

“It was a really important three points for the team,” said Clarke.

“We didn’t start very well in the first ten minutes but after that I thought we controlled the game.

“To score before half-time was thoroughly deserved and we created a lot of chances. We knew that they were going to put pressure on us in the second half but we rode it out and got the result.

“The pitch was sticky and very wet in places with puddle patches so it was difficult in the first half. It took us a while to get used to the pitch and the conditions but after that we played really well.

“It was a test of character for all the boys. We did well, didn’t let our heads drop, kept on going, kept playing the way the manager wants us to play and the way we know we can play and we got what we deserved.”

The City squad had only trained under the new manager once prior to this match and will continue to learn more about his approach as time goes on. But first there is a match with Colchester on Tuesday to concentrate on first.

The striker added: “We’ve only worked with him for one day but he has said he is going to introduce his ideas a bit at a time.

“We have worked on a few set–pieces, both attacking and defending, which was good and we want to keep working and move forward.

“But now we have a home game on Tuesday and we know we need to address our home form if we are going to get where we want to be.”

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