Pearson urges Town to get to grips with defending in the Championship

Matty Pearson celebrates his goal against Cardiff
Matty Pearson celebrates his goal against Cardiff

Town defender Matty Pearson has urged his side to get to grips with the attacking prowess that sides in the Championship possess.

The Hatters more than held their own at former Premier League side Cardiff City on Saturday, but left with nothing, beaten 2-1.

Both goals were hugely avoidable though, Aden Flint bundling a deep free kick home from close range, with an unmarked Isaac Vassell then nodding home in stoppage time.

That came on the back of shipping three in the 3-3 draw with Middlesbrough at Kenilworth Road, as Pearson said: “It’s so disappointing, but that’s what you get when you come up a level.

“You’ve got to see the game fully out and I think we’ve done well in parts.

“We played brilliant, but there’s all those areas we need to improve on, like the last five minutes, is an area we need to improve on.

“We need to get to grips with it quick.

“The first two games we’ve conceded twice from a set-piece, as a defender we all know what we need to do, it’s just frustrating and gutted about how the result went.

“You see the Liverpool game the other night, Liverpool were that clinical that Norwich were 3-0 down before they could say anything.

“That’s the levels, they’re so clinical and those half chances are goals.

“We need to eliminate them having those chances, we’ll look back on it and go through it all.”

Like manager Graeme Jones, Pearson was particularly annoyed by the City’s first goal, with the manner of it absolutely no surprise to the defender.

He continued: “That’s exactly what Cardiff do, we knew, we go through it, then it’s happened and that’s their strengths.

“It’s just disappointing, that’s all I can say, it’s disappointing.

“That’s their gameplan, to get the ball in the box at every opportunity, get the big lads up and cause havoc really.

“We dealt with some of them really well, but the ones you don’t deal with they score, us as defenders have got to be better.”

Former Hatters Vassell had only been on the pitch a matter of minutes when he popped up with the winner, left all alone to beat Simon Sluga.

Pearson said: “It’s hard, especially when they push more men forward and people end up picking up when they shouldn’t be .

“It’s last ditch, stuff happens like that, it’s the worst feeling ever isn’t it, but we’ve got to get over it.”

A return of one point from the first to matches is by no means a disappointing opening for the Hatters either given the quality of their opponents.

Pearson thought that Town were definitely not looking out of place in the second tier of English football either, adding: “ I don’t think we’ve been terrible, I think we’re more than capable.

“We’ve scored goals, it’s just the fine detail that we need to get right.

“At the minute, we’re all down, but I’m sure looking back at the game when we get the good clips on, and scoring goals like we have been doing, I’m sure we’ll be fine next week.

“It’s not like we got absolutely battered by them.

“Obviously they’ve had a few chances early doors and we can look back on it and see what the manager says and see where we can improve, that’s the route we’re going to take and I’m sure we’ll get better.”