Flitcroft tells Bury defence to ‘stand up and be counted’ after sloppy Gills defeat

Bury manager David Flitcroft urged his defenders to stand up and be counted and offer greater protection to the goalkeeper following the 3-1 loss to Gillingham.

The Shakers took the lead inside four minutes as top scorer Leon Clarke headed past the home keeper, but the Gills, who are unbeaten at home, were in front just six minutes later.

Debutant Dominic Samuel and John Egan both scored, as Bury failed to clear set pieces, to turn the game around and the Gills confirmed the win late on with Emmanuel Osadabe’s solo effort.

Flitcroft was disappointed to concede twice, so quickly after taking the lead, and has called on his side to offer more protection to their keeper.

“To score so early, it’s really important to focus at that point,” he said.

“We’ve got a young keeper in today who did fantastically well and I said to the player that it’s really important at that stage to protect him.

“You’ve got to embrace the fact that they are going to load the box and make it uncomfortable for a young keeper and they didn’t do that [protect him].

“I wanted my defenders to really stand up at that point, at 1-0 up, to stand up and be counted and they didn’t do that.”

Jack Ruddy stood in for Paddy Kenny after the veteran had been expected to make his first start on returning to the club before he was injured in training.

Flitcroft said he is targeting improving the defensive side of his team to ensure that they continue their early success in League One.

“We’ve conceded three goals and that’s something we’ve got to work on,” he said.

“But there are always positives, we’re progressing well and we’ve enjoyed our start to the league.

“December and January is a busy programme with a lot of games to navigate – we’ll dust ourselves off and I believe anything in terms of scoring and conceding goals you can eradicate on the training ground.

“That’s something we go to work on Monday and we improve on what we’re doing and there’s been big improvements from last season but we want to be successful.”

Image courtesy of Bury FC via YouTube, with thanks.

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