‘Disappointed’ - What Joey Barton said about Bristol Rovers loss to Wycombe

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Bristol Rovers suffered a 2-0 defeat to Wycombe Wanderers - and had to watch former striker Brandon Hanlan score against them.

Joey Barton believes that the pitch at Bristol Rovers impacted them in their 2-0 defeat to Wycombe Wanderers at the Memorial Stadium.

Former Gas striker Brandon Hanlan returned to Mem and haunted his former side after profiting on an error from Aston Villa loanee Lamare Bogarde. Tjay de Barr profited on Bogarde’s loose touch and fed it into Hanlan to drill home past James Belshaw for what was just his third goal of the campaign.

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Wycombe - who had only won one in six before tonight - doubled their lead after Jason McCarthy crossed in for Chem Campbell heading home just after the hour mark. Campbell and Hanlan’s goals meant the Gas have now gone five matches without a victory in front of their home supporters.

“I’m disappointed,” began Barton in his assessment of the defeat. "We’ve had a number of good opportunities. Goals change games and we gift them the first goal. I do think it is our pitch.

“It takes a bobble and Lamare won’t be used to that playing at Aston Villa. I can’t be anymore critical of the pitch, I’ve said my piece on that in recent weeks, I think we’re 20th for home form and you have to factor in our pitch.

“We want to get the ball down and play and as we’ve seen from their first goal, it gets away from Lamare and Brandon gets an opportunity to score. At that point, we were the better side. They score in that moment and it gives them the opportunity to sit back.

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“We’ve still created a number of opportunities via poor finishing, good defending, and goalkeeping we haven’t managed to put it in the back of the net.”

Rovers will have been frustrated that they could not breach the Wycombe defence at least once given the chances they had. The hosts had 21 shots and hit eight at Max Stryje’s goal. Ryan Loft went near with his header hitting the crossbar whilst Josh Coburn was denied in a one-on-one.

Barton’s side have now only scored once in their last six home matches, and both Coburn and Loft are on a scoreless run. Loft has struggled for a start and has not started since January with his last goal coming in October. Middlesbrough loanee Coburn meanwhile got a second consecutive start but hasn’t netted since January 7.

When asked if Coburn and Loft need a goal for their confidence, Barton responded: "I think all strikers do, it does wonders for their confidence. It’s not for not getting in there, Josh had a couple of opportunities tonight. Certainly, when he was in form in the earlier part of the season you’d expect to see him put them away. When you see him go through you do really fancy Josh.

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"As a young striker they do go through spells, I think Lofty is huffing and puffing, he’s hit the post and it comes back out to John Marquis who manages to get a strike on it and it hits the keeper’s hand. You just need one to come off your backside and away you go.

"If they keep getting in there and we keep servicing it, 21 attempts tonight, eight on target. For us it’s quite high, a lot of opportunities to not score."

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