Bath City (home), Buildbase FA Trophy 1st Round
Saturday 10th December, KO 3.00
 
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 - MANAGER'S COLUMN -

Previous columns can be found under the match report of the game to which they refer, while video interviews can be found here.

The first half at North Ferriby was very disappointing to say the least and we gave ourselves a mountain to climb, and we really went for it in the last half hour with four up top and Jamie Collins in to midfield and nearly escaped with a draw but in the end it was a disappointing performance and a disappointing result.

In the first hour we were poor, probably the poorest we've been in any away game so far this season, and we had to change things up for the last half hour. The three substitutes came on and made a big difference on what was a difficult surface. 

Both goals were disappointing to concede. The first goal we thought should never have been a free kick to them because we thought Roarie Deacon was fouled first and it was one of two key decisions that went against us, although equally disappointing was that their player then scored with a free header. The second decision was when he blew his whistle to give us a free kick about a quarter of a second before the ball fell to Craig Eastmond, who's then scored a 'worldy', but he didn't wait to blow his whistle and that cost us a point, and what I think overall would have been a deserved point although it shouldn't cover up the inadequacy of the first hour.

Conceding the second in such a poor fashion at the start of the second half was a huge blow, and I'm not sure what we were trying to do – I think Jamie should just have given it back to Ross Worner, but if there is a positive it's that we could have folded at that point and not given it a go, but we didn't do that, we scored a very good goal, and had so many chances around their goal in the closing stages that didn't quite fall to us. Their keeper's made a great save from Jamie Collins, and Chris Dickson has missed a good chance. But it will be a massively disappointing long trip home on the train, because while we're very good at home, away from home we just haven't been getting the results away from home. 

The first goal was disappointing from Ben Jefford's point of view as he allowed their player to get a jump on him, but I don't think that should detract from what I thought was a good first performance from him. In the first hour I'd struggle to pick out anyone who had a decent game but Ben would probably have been one. 

This is a difficult place to come and although the referee booked eight players I didn't think it was a dirty game, just very competitive. They're fighting for everything at the foot of the table and I think they were a credit to their manager in the way they chased the ball and blocked shots in the second half, and although we gifted them one if not both goals I think they deserved full credit. 

Although Chris Dickson missed that late chance I thought he made a huge difference when he came on and showed the sort of bursts that we've been hoping to see from him. Craig McAllister did well as well, and they've both put themselves in contention for Tuesday's game at Boreham Wood, where Jamie Collins is now suspended so Simon Downer will come straight back in. We'll be hoping to turn round the away form on Tuesday, as if we don't start winning our away games it's going to put pressure on us to keep winning at home.

 

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