Steelers’ boss Christiansen faces challenges in all sections of the ice pad

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Doug Christiansen must have flinched when he said it.

But his post-match analysis after Sheffield Steelers’ defeats at Nottingham Panthers and then at home to Braehead Clan was pretty damning.

The American coach admitted his team should have played better “in all three zones against” Braehead, considering the scale of the loss at Nottingham Panthers the night before.”

In short, they’d been mullered on the Saturday and then were off colour in every section of the ice the night after. On top of that, offensive players Max Lacroix and Chad Langlais were out injured: Lacroix with an ankle break that threatens his short-term future.

Christiansen said: “When the guy leading the league in goal scoring is out, you have to look to other players to step up. Some did. Rylan Galiardi and Rob Dowd, played better - but every single night now we need players stepping up to the forefront.”

On the side, the things that were going wrong, are fixable, he said.

“The backbone of what we are is about good decisions, these are correctable mistakes. Some were corrected (after Nottingham) but clearly not enough. A lot of the goals we have conceded have been on the penalty kill, as well, so we are looking at all facets of our game.”

Steelers host Cardiff Devils on Sunday.