Ice Hockey: Legue worried about the view from on high

Steelers' Jeff Legue
Steelers' Jeff Legue
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Jeff Legue admits his Sheffield Steelers team is suffering a crisis of confidence.

Sheffield Steelers’ most creative player came to the conclusion after an injured foot forced him to sit out last Sunday’s defeat at Coventry Blaze.

Watching from the sidelines was, at times, almost as painful as the wound caused by blocking a shot the previous night at Belfast Giants.

He said: “I’m not a good watcher, I don’t enjoy watching but I was sat with Rob Dowd and it’s amazing what you see from above.

“We had good possession in Coventry like we did in Belfast, we just couldn’t score.

“We have good players who have ability and heart. I think we are just so short on confidence and second-guessing ourselves right now.

“It might just be a five-feet pass but we are questioning ourselves, I’m sure I am as much to blame as every other guy.

“It starts with the simple plays, guys skate up the ice and they have two options, but right now they are taking a third one and it’s putting us in trouble.

“Those are mental breakdowns and they are hurting us. It’s not a question of fitness. I haven’t played on a Steelers team that is so in shape.”

Legue will have recovered to play against Cardiff Devils.

He said: “I will be ready for the weekend. The foot feels a lot better today than yesterday, I can roll it rather than walking on the heel. I’m being well looked after and I can’t see a reason why I won’t be in the line up for Cardiff on Saturday.

“It was just bad luck how it happened. Late in the game against Belfast we took a penalty and I was on the kill and blocked a shot. Once the skate came off at the end of the night it was killing me.

“We got it x-rayed once we arrived in Birmingham and there was no break, which was good to hear.

“The doctor didn’t want to inject me on Sunday as they thought it would do more harm than good. I was dressed, I wanted to play but it wasn’t to be.”

Generally, the Canadian centreman insist his team-mates are committed to addressing form issues which has made them a mid-table team.

And he had a message to supporters - a minority of whom have been calling for personnel changes.

“There isn’t a player in the room not frustrated but there also isn’t a player not willing to pay the price to put it right,” he said.

“There is no lack of effort, no lack of commitment. The room is focused on putting this right, we don’t like where we are any more than the fans, coaches and management.

“We are the ones who will put it right, get us back on board and turn this ship around.”

n Fife Flyers defenceman Matt Nickerson has been banned for 12 matches for ‘excessive roughness’ against Braehead Clan’s former Steeler Chris Frank. The League says he “punched him (Frank) numerous times and also proceeded to choke Frank when he was unable to protect himself.”