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Speed learns lessons of loss

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11 Aug 2011 07:00:24

Speed learns lessons of loss

Wales manager Gary Speed claimed his side had been given a "kick up the back side" following their 2-1 defeat to Australia at Cardiff City Stadium.

Goals from Tim Cahill and Robbie Kruse gave the Socceroos the win in the first meeting between the nations, with substitute Darcy Blake netting his first international goal late on for the hosts.

When asked what he had learnt from the game, Speed said: "I learnt that we have not progressed as much as I thought we had."

He added: "I thought we had improved a little bit more than that first-half performance showed.

"That was very disappointing, it was a carbon copy of the England game (in March) where we started really poorly and finished strongly, but you can't give away two goals to sides like that because you rarely get back in it, we tried but it was too late.

"I was angry at half-time. They are all good players and they did not do themselves justice and it has been a recurring theme, where we have started poorly and then improved and it is something we must look at."

Wales at times found it difficult to get the pace of Gareth Bale and Craig Bellamy into the game, and Robert Earnshaw endured a lonely evening up front, but Speed does not feel that he needs to alter the style of play and system he is trying to put in place ahead of next month's Euro 2012 qualifiers against Montenegro and England.

He said: "We are building, we are trying to progress and get to the next step which is getting people into positions to create chances. To get Bale, Bellamy and (Aaron) Ramsey into the game, we had been doing it well in training but it's different against a quality side like that.

"It shows how much we have to do. It's given everyone a kick up the back side, we need to knuckle down and improve and as poorly as we played in the first half it shows you have to stay in the game. We finished strongly and got a goal but if you are 2-0 down against those teams it is difficult to get back and it is a mountain to climb."


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