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Cherries: Bradbury backing players to bounce back
Published : 14 Mar 2011 07:00:00
BOSS Lee Bradbury tipped his wounded Cherries troops to overcome their Saints setback and insisted the race for a top-two place remained open. Bradbury believes long-time leaders Brighton will claim the League One title but thinks the battle for the second automatic promotion spot could go to the wire. The Cherries manager saw his side lose ground in their pursuit of a place in the Championship when they were defeated 3-1 by Southampton at Dean Court. Lauri Dalla Valle fired Cherries in front but goals from Lee Barnard, Dean Hammond and Rickie Lambert ensured Saints leapfrogged their neighbours in the table, with Huddersfield moving into second. After backing class act Brighton to take the crown, Bradbury was asked whether the battle would go to the wire for the other clubs involved at the top. He said: There are so many teams there and there are only a couple of points in it either way. I think it might go to the last game so, hopefully, we will be in the mix come the last game. Bradbury felt Saturday's scoreline flattered the visitors and insisted his side had played the better football for long spells. It was the third time Cherries had tasted defeat against the St Mary's outfit this term. When asked what mental effect the result would have on his team, Bradbury added: It will give them a little dip but it is how you react. We've got a strong bunch and I do believe we will come back from it. Saints boss Nigel Adkins insisted his men were still gunning for the title. He said: We had a few issues we needed to address at half-time. We did that and the players responded very well. Collectively as a group and together as one, we want to be successful, we want to win this division and we want to get promoted. But we have just got to take it one game at a time.