Still praises Hatters’ resilience at rain-lashed Gateshead

Luke Guttridge makes a challenge in the sodden conditions at Gateshead
Luke Guttridge makes a challenge in the sodden conditions at Gateshead

Hatters boss John Still felt the conditions that faced Hatters during the trip to Gateshead yesterday were one of the worst he had ever experienced as a manager, writes Mike Simmonds.

At times, Town batted a howling gale and monsoon-like rain as they battled to a valuable goalless draw against a Heed side who had won their last five games.

Still said: “I don’t just think it was tough opponents, I think it was a tough day all round and that was as bad conditions as I can remember a team playing in.

“It was really really difficult with the wind, it was so strong and then the rain lashed in the second half, so away from home, to a team that’s in good form, that was a terrific performance in terms of discipline and organisation.

“As I say to the players, you’ve got to play games in all conditions against all teams at all times of the year and that was a classic example of that.

“It was horrific conditions, on a decent pitch, and the pitch was quite firm which made the water lie on the surface at the end.

“It was one of those where we thought with about 20 (minutes) to go, I hope we finish this as we don’t want to come back on a Tuesday night.

“I don’t believe there’s a massive difference away from home, but when you’ve travelled as far as we’ve travelled and played in conditions we’ve played, us soft southerners, weren’t too soft.”

The point saw Hatters extend their own unbeaten run to 10 games, something Still was delighted, especially as they were never at their best throughout the game.

He continued: “For my own point of view, the most important thing when you go and play games is you get something from the game.

“As long as your form is consistent, you can play a game where you don’t play great and you get something from it and you’re delighted because your general form is consistent.

“If conditions were better, there might have been a goal or two in it, but it wasn’t to be.

“There were a couple of chances for both teams, Luke Guttridge had two good opportunities for us, but to put on a performance like that for both teams in those conditions, I’m delighted.

“It’s a long drive back, but it’s always nice to go back when you feel you earned something.”

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