VIDEO: Goal slump has undermined Sheffield Steelers’ all-round confidence

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Frustration over missed chances has had a direct impact on Sheffield Steelers’ title ambitions and attacked team confidence.

That’s the assessment of Mike Ratchuk, who plays both forward and defence for the club.

Since Boxing Day, Steelers have suffered five defeats in which they have only scored two goals or less. And Steelers go into Saturday’s home date with Dundee Stars needing to exhibit more belief in themselves, especially if they go behind.

The side has slumped to three consecutive home defeats and will be looking to put that disastrous spell behind them.

“A couple of times we have got into games a few have gone in (goals conceded) and mentally we have kind of had breakdowns” admitted the American. “A lot of frustration sets in when you are not getting the goals you are going for. For us it’s a matter of showing up what we are doing wrong and fix it.

“A lot of times when we go into games, maybe we don’t finish scoring chances that we could...(we need to be) having the confidence of knowing that we will have more opportunities. When our confidence levels are there and we feel good about each other it shows.”

Mike Ratchuk: Pic by Dean Woolley

Mike Ratchuk: Pic by Dean Woolley

Ratchuk believes the champions had enough leaders and ability to thrive: “Yeah, we have the guys in the room for it, we have the skill set and the

talent.”

The skater doesn’t seem to mind in which position he plays. “It probably is a bit harder work on the wing, compared to the back end. I have fun with both of them so wherever he (coach Paul Thompson) wants me to go, I go. But I enjoy playing forward; I love playing defence.”

Ratchuk expects an uncompromising battle with Stars at iceSheffield. “That will be a tough match, they have a different defensive zone coverage we’ll have to work at. We just have to come with a lot of force and play hard at them.”

Steelers hope to make some progress on signing a new right winger next week.

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