Ade has a lot to offer this football club

Last updated : 20 January 2008 By Tony Scholes
Coventry boss Iain Dowie has seen his side drop even further down the league but thought his side deserved something from the game. "You're never happy when you get beaten, especially at home where we have let our fans down too often this season," Dowie admitted after the game.

"What I will say is that even with ten men there was a fantastic desire from the boys, trying to drive the game forward. We had good opportunities; we had fifteen crosses and thirteen shots in the first half alone. It was a disappointing result but I cannot fault the desire, I cannot fault the hunger and there were some positives.

"The manner of the goals was very disappointing for us and the game hinged on when we weren't given a penalty. They then went up field and we got a man sent off. Kev can perhaps look back on that decision because it certainly wasn't one of the best that he's made when he was on a booking.

"In terms of how we drove on, I don't think the sending off really affected things because we still drove forward and we still had chances. We were very unfortunate to lose out in this game."

What a day for Owen Coyle after the turmoil of Friday. Before speaking about the game he confirmed that we have bids in for three players and then of the win said: "It is a fantastic win. I think anyone who comes here and gets three points is going to have to work very hard and we did that today. Coventry are an attack-minded side, just like ourselves, and it must have been a fantastic game for any neutral to watch.

"I felt we fully deserved it in the end. In the first half it could have swung either way and the sending off is maybe a turning point in how the game ended up. I thought we could have won it 11 v 11 and I don't like players being sent off, but I felt he came in late without any malice and the referee has deemed it a red card."

On Gray he added: "I never expected his departure to have an effect and because of what happened on Friday I felt he wasn't going to be of value to us on the training ground. We concentrated on the training ahead of an important game and the preparations paid off.

Gray's replacement was Ade Akinbiyi who started just his fourth league game of the season and gave the Clarets and early lead. Coyle said of him: "Ade doesn't need to do anything to step into Andy Gray's shoes. He just has to be Ade Akinbiyi, which he showed today.

"He was terrific from first to last. A lot was made of Andy's departure, but Ade has shown that when he is given the opportunity he can grab it. That is three games he has started for me and he has scored twice and could have scored as many again against Bristol City.

"He has shown he has a lot to offer this football club. He led the line brilliantly and even when he is not starting games his sense of togetherness is totally professional. I can't speak highly enough about him as a man.

"Given the career he's had it would be easy for him to say 'listen gaffer, I want to be playing week in and week out'. But he is still prepared to knuckle down and await his chance and he has again showed what a top player he is."