English League 1

Roberts: Boro job is difficult

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Mon, 25 Mar 2013 11:48:00

Huddersfield's on-loan striker Jermaine Beckford made his debut for Jamaica in their 1-1 World Cup qualifier at home to Panama.

He played 65 minutes before being replaced by fellow on-loan Town team-mate Theo Robinson for his second cap.

The Terriers duo, whose parent clubs are Leicester and Derby respectively, could feature again on Tuesday in the Reggae Boyz' next World Cup qualifier at Costa Rica.

France go into the game two points ahead of Spain with the opportunity to extend their lead at the Stade de France following their opponents' disappointing 1-1 draw with Finland on Friday.

France had no such problems with a 3-1 win over Georgia and Tottenham goalkeeper Lloris does not feel Les Bleus should change their approach against the side who beat them 2-0 at Euro 2012.

He said: "It doesn't change the way we'll be going into the game.

"We know how good Spain are and they are able to come here to win."

France face Spain following a win inspired by goals by Olivier Giroud, Mathieu Valbuena and Franck Ribery at home to third place Georgia.

Another win for France on Tuesday would leave Spain facing a potential play-off to reach the World Cup finals in Brazil.

Zoumana Bakayogo's first-half double, along with a goal from Ben Gibson, put Tranmere in control despite Luke Freeman's exquisite free-kick.

Moore believed the win over Stevenage would have been more comfortable for his side if they had taken their chances.

He said: "It should have been seven at half-time with the chances we had and if Mama (Sidibe) scores in the second half it's 4-1 and we would probably go on and win by a lot more goals, but it was pleasing. Overall, I think we were the better side and deserved to win.

"It's not like me but we gave the lads three days off last week and then the snow came and we couldn't train so, in the end, they have probably had about five days off and I thought in the first half we were nice and bright.

"I don't think they could handle the front four in the first half.

"Those four, on their day, are hard to contain and there is no way in this world their back four could cope with them.

"Zoum (Bagayoko) was fantastic and so unlucky not to get a hat-trick with the one early in the second-half which has been kicked off the line but I'm pleased for him, he has got a lot of quality, there is no doubt about that."

The Boro slumped to a seventh straight away defeat, going down 3-1 at Tranmere on Sunday.

Zoumana Bakayogo's first-half double, along with a goal from Ben Gibson, put Tranmere in control despite Luke Freeman's exquisite free-kick.

And Roberts, who started at centre-back at Prenton Park, revealed that he was grateful to the squad after their response to him stepping into the breach.

He said: "It's not been the easiest of weeks; it's always a turbulent time.

"When Gary left there was big disappointment and it was up to me to pick the players up and try and get a positive reaction out of them and I cannot thank the lads enough, I'm proud of every one of them.

"They have come together and shown spirit and collective team togetherness which will serve us in good stead going forward.

"The role is something I try and take in my stride and something I try and do to the best of my ability.

"I'm obviously gutted we didn't take something from the game because I felt we were equipped and showed quite a few positive things in the game.

"If we had got that second goal we could have pushed on for the equaliser and I'm sure they would have got twitchy.

"We were unable to do that but we didn't stop playing, we kept on moving forwards and that's exactly what I wanted from the lads."

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