Draw more like a defeat for manager

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ASHINGTON CFC manager Gary Middleton described Saturday’s 1-1 home bore draw against Marske United like being a defeat.

He also said his players have got to stand up and be counted.

Skipper Liam Atkin’s 94th minute goal saw the Colliers claim a share of the spoils against the Teessiders, but it was a clearly disappointed Middleton after the final whistle.

“When Liam scored, I felt no happiness – in fact despite the end result, it was like a defeat,” he said.

“It was a lack lustre performance throughout with no purpose to our play and it was not good enough.

“We have good players but they have got to stand up and be counted and to show their worth – today they didn’t.

“It looked like a typical end of season performance and that’s hugely disappointing because we have set goals from the last ten games of the season and have fallen a long way short of what we expected.”

Middleton – not one to single players out – nevertheless praised keeper Karl Dryden.

“Had it not been for Karl Dryden, who pulled off three or four great saves, we would have been out of the game,” he said.

“I thought our general play was ok but we have got to show enthusiasm both up front and also in not conceding at the back.

“We asked the players at the interval to give a little bit more and to show quality.

“We had lots of opportunities but there was not enough desire to score a goal.

“For the goal we conceded it was lack lustre defending.

“We had two chances to clear but they were first to get a connection to keep it alive and get a shot on target and they probably felt they deserved it.”