Dale praises Spartans’ response to going behind

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Blyth Spartans winger Robbie Dale was quick to praise the his side’s reaction in their win at Stamford on Saturday.

An early Matthew Wade goal set them on their way to three points but they made hard work of the win as three quick-fire goals from the home side saw Spartans have to overturn a two-goal deficit.

However, they duly did that thanks to goals from front men Arran Wearmouth and Dan Maguire and a winner from substitute Paul Robinson.

“I think we let ourselves down in the first half,” said Dale.

“We took the lead but we stopped going forward, we should have gone two or three up but instead we just sat back.

“To be fair, though, it was a great reaction, especially from the front two.

“For the first hour Arran and Dan tore them to shreds and both were outstanding.”

Not for the first time this season, Dale had a different role to play for Spartans.

After a serious injury to Conor Grant the winger took his place in goal with no substitute goalkeeper on the bench.

Just as he did at Grantham Town in November, Dale managed to keep a clean sheet, leading to chants of “England’s number one” from the Green Army, although he felt that was more down to his team-mates’ protection than his own performance.

“To be fair, I haven’t had a lot of saves to make in those two games,” he said.

“I don’t know why but I think it has may be given us a bit of a push and we concentrate a little bit more to protect me a bit more in goal than if Conor Grant is in there.”

The win at Stamford secured an eighth place finish for Dale and his team-mates, a “massive improvement” in the words of the long serving winger.

However, that was tinged with a little bit of regret as Dale pointed to a poor run away from Croft Park as the main reason his side didn’t reach the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League play-offs.

He said: “I think our squad was good enough to reach the play-offs, if I am honest, but we went far too long without winning an away game, that killed us off and left us with too much to do.

“It’s been a massive improvement on what happened last year and overall I think we are happy with it.”