LEE CLARK reflected on a “perfect away day” as Town returned to the League I play-off positions with a 1-0 derby win at Oldham.
Robbie Williams’ well-struck 59th-minute free-kick ended a run of five successive away defeats in front of 3,909 travelling fans in an 8,569 crowd at Boundary Park yesterday.
“We’ve made a big thing about improving our away form, so to come here and keep a clean sheet and win with such a fantastic strike in front of a fantastic following makes it a perfect away day,” said the manager.
“We did everything you need to when you go away. We were resolute, strong and aggressive and we certainly played to the (windy and rainy) conditions.Related content
“We tried to pass it at times, but often we were forced to do different things.”
Clark added: “With a little bit more luck we could have had more goals. Jordan Rhodes hit the bar and had another go inches wide and I think we deserved the win.
“The lads had the incentive of getting into the top six and five points behind the second-placed side (Charlton) and they stood up to be counted.”
Of the winner, Clark explained: “They had a dominant force in the air in Sean Gregan, so we had to try and do something a little bit different from our set-pieces.
“Robbie, as well you know, has a sweet left foot and he couldn’t have struck it any better.”
ROBBIE WILLIAMS fired Town into League I’s top six with a sweetly-struck free-kick at Oldham Athletic then smiled: “It’s good to be back where we belong.”
The 25-year-old left-back’s first goal of the season arrived in the 59th minute at a wind and rain-lashed Boundary Park, where a bumper 3,909 Town fans in an overall 8,569 crowd saw Lee Clark’s side end a run of five straight away losses with yesterday’s 1-0 victory.
Williams took the set-piece, from the Town left, ahead of Anthony Pilkington, whose run towards the far post appeared to distract home keeper Dean Brill.Related content
“Pilks and I can both hit a decent ball and we had a quick discussion as Oldham set their wall,” he explained.
“I saw where the keeper was standing and how the wall was positioned and I knew if I got good contact, I could bend it in.
“The lads have been ribbing me, saying it was time I made a free-kick count, and it was fantastic to see it hit the net.”
Town slid out of the play-off positions at the start of last month and Williams added: “We all felt an away win has been coming, and it feels great.
“The conditions were horrible and we had to work hard, because Oldham are a good side, but we deserved the points.
“It feels great to be back in the play-off zone, and with home games against Wycombe, then Hartlepool to follow the FA Cup game against Dagenham and Redbridge (at the Galpharm on Friday), we have a great chance to kick on.”
Boss Clark was today waiting for the result of a scan on striker Lee Novak’s shoulder injury.