Middleton disappointed with Ashington’s first half display in 9-0 win

Andrew Johnson completes his hat-trick for Ashington in the 9-0 mauling of Pontefract in the FA Cup.
Andrew Johnson completes his hat-trick for Ashington in the 9-0 mauling of Pontefract in the FA Cup.
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Ashington boss Gary Middleton said after his side had thrashed West Yorkshire outfit Pontefract Collieries 9-0 in their FA Cup clash at the weekend that he was ‘disappointed’ at half-time.

The Colliers had led 3-0 at the interval.

Middleton said: “It was a good win in the end, although when we came in at half-time I was actually disappointed with the performance in general.

“I thought we could have been a lot better in possession and at times worked harder to stop them having the ball.

“I also felt we were a little bit sloppy all over the park and could have stepped things up.”

The boss said he is still looking for the ultimate performance.

“When we did play in the first half, we carved them open,” he added.

“The frustrating thing was trying to get some continuity to our performance because it was bitty in the first period, and to be fair it probably improved a little bit in the second half.

“However, I still thought over the 90 minutes we could have been better.

“I know it may sound harsh, but that’s what we are striving for and there is still loads for us to improve on.”

Middleton is now demanding consistency.

“Some of the goals were very good because they were team goals and that was pleasing,” he said.

“But therein lies the frustration for my assistant Perry Briggs and myself.

“We know the lads can do it but they need to do it more often and consistently.”

The boss is delighted with the form shown by recent newcomer Sam Norris who came from Newcastle Benfield.

He added: “I thought Sam did well in the midweek clash against Durham City, and for the time he was on the pitch today, looks a very good player who gives us another option down the flank to what Andrew Johnson gives us all of the time.

“That is good and is what we want.”

Middleton played down his overall assessment of the goals glut.

“Nine is a good tally,” he said. “In the end I was just pleased to progress to the next round.”