Cassidy issues challenge

BLYTH Spartans manager Tommy Cassidy was full of fighting talk at the weekend, despite his side now lying bottom of the Blue Square North following Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at Altrincham.

“We are truly in a dreadful position,” he said.

“But we must continue to take each game separately and not think too much about the table.

“We’ll fight on and the players must realise that they are fighting for their futures at this club too – whether we stay up or go down.”

As for Saturday’s performance, Cassidy, pictured, said: “We were really poor in the first half.

“We never got going. Our passing was poor and we hardly threatened.”

Blyth conceded on 33 minutes when Marlon Broomes side footed home.

“We were caught sleeping when Altrincham, took a free kick,” added the Croft Park boss.

“Their player got two yards on one of our defenders before he woke up.

“It was a terrible goal to give away.

“In fact, we were weak against Altrincham’s set pieces all game.

“Going in at half-time I was embarrassed with our performance and I hope the players were too,” Cassidy said.

The hosts were awarded a penalty only three minutes into the second half which Damien Reeves converted, despite Blyth keeper Rob Birdsall doing well and getting a hand to it.

“It was harsh,” added Cassidy.

“Buchs [Wayne Buchanan] was already on the ground when their lad tried to jump over him but caught Buchs’ leg. That killed the game for us.”

Nevertheless the Spartans upped their game and Wayne Phillips hit the post before Graeme Armstrong pulled a goal back by heading in a Joe Kendrick cross.

The boss said: “It was a good goal and after that we got them on the back foot a little.

“We actually could have got something from the game in that spell – something Altrincham manager Lee Sinnott conceded afterwards. “

Glen Taylor came close on several occasions for the visitors as Blyth continued to press.

With seven minutes remaining Blyth’s Lee Mason was given a straight red card for what the referee adjudged to have been a stamping offence.

Cassidy rallied to his player’s defence: “To be honest I didn’t see it but Lee said he was stepping over their player when he moved and Lee’s foot did make contact but he definitely did not do it deliberately, and Lee’s an honest lad.”

Cassidy felt for the supporters: “I’m sorry for them. I know it can’t be nice for them but we have to move on to the next game and try to play for the full 90 minutes not just 45.”

Blyth released striker Jamie Mole at the weekend after the Altrincham match and Cassidy confirmed he is looking for a new player or two to refresh the squad.

There is no sign of Cassidy rolling over and sinking in to a mire of despondency.

Rather he is prepared for a fight to the finish.