sport

Mellon: Shrewsbury deserved win

Micky Mellon insisted his Shrewsbury side were full value for their 2-1 victory against his former club Tranmere.

Trailing 1-0 to Abdulai Baggie's goal just before half-time, Shrewsbury pushed forward in search of an equaliser in the second half and were eventually rewarded with time running out as they finally found a way past goalkeeper Owain Fon Williams.

Substitute Andy Mangan tapped in a 90th-minute equaliser from Mickey Demetriou's low cross. Then the roles were reversed deep into stoppage time when Mangan's cross from the right was headed in by Demetriou, a left-back making his Football League debut following his summer arrival from Kidderminster.

"It was certainly a barnstorming ending," said Mellon.

"I love Tranmere as a football club, I truly do. I've been there as a player and had a real terrific time there, but no way did we deserve not to come away with a victory.

"We know at times - probably a lot this season - teams are going to come and set up like that against us and we had to be patient and we had to keep on knocking at the door.

"We know that we've got a decent bench and the lads that have come on have delivered for us, but I don't think anybody can say that we didn't deserve the victory."

Mellon was delighted for his side's unlikely hero Demetriou, only playing because of an injury to defender Mark Ellis, while he also hailed the match-changing impact of substitutes Mangan and Tranmere old boy Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro.

He said: "The three lads - Demetriou, Andy Mangan and big Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro - we trained on Thursday and we had a chat.

"I said to them that one of you three could be a hero at the weekend so make sure that we train properly and make sure that we're game ready when the opportunities come and, wow, things like that happen in football."

Mellon, pleased how his side never gave up, added: "We were knocking at the door for a long time and certainly deserved the victory."

Bitterly disappointed Tranmere manager Rob Edwards was frustrated that his team allowed themselves to be pushed back as the contest developed, almost inviting pressure from a Shrewsbury side expected to mount a strong promotion challenge this season.

"We did defend well but that's forgotten now as we've conceded two goals somehow," said Edwards. "We're sat there trying to see the clock out but we didn't have enough play and we weren't tidy enough with our play second half.

"We knew we were going to have to keep defending and defending, and anything can happen when you have to defend that many times.

"There's that many balls come into your box that you run the risk of it just landing at their feet and that was the first goal.

"The second goal they've scored a header in front of our posts, it's not right, you've got to defend the goal and we didn't do that well enough."

Edwards, whose team salvaged an opening-day point with a last-minute equaliser at home to York, added: "The players had to do more the last 20 minutes of the game. It was there for the taking in terms of making passes. A number of times we had the chance in terms of making passes and retain possession and get down the pitch.

"But we didn't do that and the ball came in our box again and what happened has happened."