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🗯️"Outplayed, outbattled...totally unacceptable."

Bitterly disappointed Royals boss vows to spark a reaction in his players ahead of weekend clash with Barnsley...

26 February 2020

"I'm staggered to be honest with what I've just witnessed," a bitterly disappointed Mark Bowen began his post-match reflections after a painful defeat to Wigan this evening.

"Over the time I've been here as manager, I have come into post-match press conferences and given the players pats on the back - and rightly so.

"Tonight was absolutely unacceptable.

"I'm desperately disappointed tonight. Tonight, they have certainly let themselves down first and foremost, they’ve let the club down and they’ve let me down. What they’ve produced tonight was totally unacceptable.

"From day one when I walked in, I’ve asked them to show desire to make ourselves hard to beat. We certainly weren’t hard to beat tonight.

Match Reports

📰 Report | Latics leave with 3 points

26 February 2020

"We have a good period of raising our game and raising the bar, but it's about getting that consistency. If we'd shown half the application we showed at Elland Road on Saturday, we'd have been more than competitive against Wigan tonight.

"But we were outbattled, outplayed, out-everythinged tonight. We were second best in every single capacity of the game.

"They didn't work hard enough, they didn't want the ball, there was no quality on the ball, they weren't brave, they were like shrinking violets out there. I haven't seen that in this group of players in the worst training sessions we've had since I walked into the role.

"So I don't know where that performance came from. I'm struggling to think of any player in my team who did anything right tonight. It's unacceptable and it has to change for Saturday.

Fixture News

📸 Gallery | Dismal defeat on disappointing night

26 February 2020

"There seemed to be a casualness in our mentalty going into the game. And if you're a small percentage off your game in this league, any team can beat any team. If you think you can step on that park and think you can place a nice pretty game of football and win, you'll get beat. Simple as that. The players know this, but they need reminding and reminding again.

"There are not many times I have come away from a game saying we've played really poorly since I took over. And the few times that we have been poor, we've had a reaction. I expect a huge reaction on Saturday.

"The guys that cross that white line should have a stronger desire and mentality to do things, for their teammates and the club. The desire was sadly lacking tonight. I promise I’ll make sure it’s not lacking on Saturday."


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