McCann reflects on Mannheim doing “enough” to get ahead of Wimbledon

©: Frank Uijlenbroek / World Sport Pics

Mannheimer HC coach Michael McCann said his side did “enough” to get by as they won EHL ROUND1 Pool B by virtue of goal difference ahead of Wimbledon.

They opened up with a 7-2 win over Dinamo Elektrostal on Saturday, outdoing Wimbledon’s 5-2 result against the Russians but a crucial couple of goals.

It meant they needed a draw against the English side on Sunday to get through and they just about did it. A Gonzalo Peillat drag-flick had them in control but the English side had the best of the second half, drawing level at 1-1 but could not find the winner.

As such, the German side marches on to the KO16, getting what they needed from their weekend in Barcelona amid a very busy period for the club.

“It’s enough!” McCann said after the draw with Wimbledon. “From a coaching perspective, you always want to play top hockey and get everything right. Then, if it’s 1-1, then it’s 1-1. But we didn’t play our best hockey so, from a coaching perspective, I want a bit more.

“But if we look at the performance over the weekend, going from a 5pm game on Saturday to a 2pm game on Sunday and our third double weekend in three weeks, I think the boys deserve to go through.

“We had enough corners and a few early chances to finish it off but, at the end of the day, we have done enough to qualify for the KO16 which is something we weren’t able to do in the past – getting through the phase we were in – so that’s a very positive thing.”

They are set to play two big games in Hamburg next weekend in the German league, another couple of big tests after a tough battle in Barcelona which gave McCann plenty of food for thought.

“Wimbledon are a good hockey team; they don’t five or six England internationals for no reason. They came out very well in the second half; we stopped playing a little bit, particularly when we had the overload for 10 minutes.

“We played across the front of them and didn’t play with a lot of courage, which is something we spoke about, like we had something to lose.

“Our guys are developing that and it is part of our processes for this season, to make better decisions to get this kind of result when the game is in the balance. Maybe we need to defend the last five minutes on our hands and knees; it that’s the case, we do it. Today was an example of that.”