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11 August 2012

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Great character to earn point says boss

Town boss Paul Buckle felt his side showed great character to come back from two goals down to earn a point on the opening day against Gateshead.

The Tynesiders raced into a two-goal lead at the break before goals from strikers Jon Shaw and Stuart Fleetwood levelled things up inside a 10-minute spell after the interval.

And despite being disappointed with the first 45 minutes, Buckle recognised the positives come the final whistle.

“The first half was definitely one to forget,” he told Hatters Player afterwards. “It didn’t look anything like us from pre-season and it seemed to me that the players wanted too much time on the ball. There wasn’t enough purpose about us.

“We’ve been undone for the first goal by a set-piece which is sloppy, and it’s a reminder to the players that if you concede the first goal at Kenilworth Road it’s very difficult.

“But we showed fabulous character and the fans stuck with us – and we could have won it.”

Trailing 2-0, the boss made two changes at the break introducing Shaw -nagainst his former club - and Alex Lawless for Yaser Kasim and Greg Taylor.

“I will always go for it,” Buckle said. “It was killing me to be 2-0 down at half-time. We came in and there were a lot of faces down but, it’s a good saying of ours, ‘there’s nothing on the floor, so heads up’.

“Both changes were tactical and with Jon up there we looked a different a completely different team. In the first half we were trying to score the perfect goal but once Jon was on we could hit him and everyone could join in.

“I’ve said before if we’re going to succeed this season we’re going to have to mix it up and I’m delighted we’ve shown so much character to come back from two down and draw.

“Today’s a great reminder of what this league is all about and we’ve shown the strength of character to come through it.

“There’s a lot of positives and it’s only the first game of the season.”

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