ASHINGTON CFC manager Gary Middleton admitted that the 1-1 draw with Newton Aycliffe on Saturday was ‘probably a fair result’ – but a game which his side should nevertheless have won.
Middleton said afterwards: “I thought we started terrifically and with a good tempo and we took the lead – and to be fair we got into some great areas without testing the goalkeeper which was disappointing. It was good play to get into those areas but our final ball let us down so many times. The second half of the first half – I thought they took over. They had an extra man in midfield which worked to their advantage and they probably deserved to get the equaliser.”
He continued: “We came out second half and we’ve made the width work as we had done the first 20 minutes of the first period and we’ve created chance after chance but I just felt that the ball didn’t run for us in the penalty area as it has done of late. On top of that, they were getting everything in the way; the keeper has pulled off some great saves and the lads did everything but put the ball in the back of the net. I’m frustrated because this was a game which we probably should have won but on saying that, they looked dangerous on the break and it was probably a fair result on the day.”
He continued: “Some of our players are saying it’s two points dropped but you need to put the ball in the back of the net and we haven’t done that. And I thought every time Aycliffe have gone forward, they looked dangerous and they could have had opportunities. Having said all that, we have played a team who are fifth top – and they are not there by good luck. Aycliffe are a good side and we are coming away disappointed that we haven’t got all three points but if at the start of the season you were asked if you would be happy with one point away from home in every game, you would take it.”
Middleton thought some of the players looked jaded: “We’ve still had a great week with two wins and a point against a team higher up the league than ourselves. But at times we looked tired today, particularly the back four. However, if you’re going to be a good team and a successful one, you’ve got be able to play in lots of games and get through them and get three points. All in all I was a little bit frustrated but it was a good point to keep the unbeaten run going.”