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Dave Challinor stays focused as Stockport streak continues

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 7 Oct 2023

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Stockport boss Dave Challinor believes his side must manage their expectations despite extending their winning streak to six matches with a narrow 1-0 success over Doncaster.

Tanto Olaofe broke the deadlock in a close encounter in the 84th minute, nodding home an inswinging Will Collar cross and sealing a triumph which moved County up to second in the table, one point behind League Two leaders Notts County.

“After the goal I was really pleased with how we went about keeping the ball out and getting three points from a scrappy 1-0,” said Challinor.

“There’s nothing wrong with that and we’ve got to make sure that expectation around here doesn’t become that we turn up every week and just roll teams over because that’s not the case.

“We hope it is but the reality is that probably won’t be the case for most weeks.”

And while Stockport are currently in fine form, Challinor played down the importance of the current run.

He added: “It’s nice but it doesn’t make much difference to be fair. Normally within runs you’ll win one, win two, win three, then draw one and keep things going. We’ve won six and that’s a really nice feeling.

“I still stick to the fact that if we were sat 20th now and I could guarantee we’d be sitting in the top three in April I’d be taking it.

“We are where we are, there’s loads of positives to take. We must embrace them and take them forwards.”

Doncaster manager Grant McCann was disappointed to see Rovers lose a game where he thought there was little to separate the two sides.

Doncaster should have taken the lead after the break but Ben Hinchliffe produced a fine double save to deny Modou Faal before quickly getting back to his feet to palm away after Joe Ironside’s effort on the rebound.

“I don’t think there was anything in the game at all to be honest,” said McCann. “We didn’t feel threatened and I thought we did our job well all game until that moment.

“There are two chances in the second half; they’ve taken theirs and we haven’t taken ours. I think that was the game.

“Football games are won in big moments. We don’t get to the ball quick enough in midfield, we don’t get to the cross and we leave Olaofe free in the six-yard box.

“Big moments in games either win or lose you games. Today it’s lost us the game.

“We weren’t great today from an attacking point of view but I didn’t think they were either. I thought it was a game that was just going to peter out into a draw.”

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