No positives in big defeat for Spartans

Blyth Spartans go into Saturday’s FA Cup Third Qualifying Round game against Guiseley knowing that they need to up their game if they are to make any progress in the competition.

Monday, 27th September 2021, 1:05 pm
Updated Monday, 27th September 2021, 1:05 pm
Michael Nelson.

In their last outing, away to Chester on Saturday, they were trounced 5-1 in the league, with all the opposition goals coming in the second half and with manager Michael Nelson claimed afterwards that the only positive to come out of the game was the fact ‘the fans kept singing.’

JJ O’Donnell bagged his fifth goal of the season as Spartans took a 1-0 lead into the break.

But in the second half the home side made all the running and netted five goals without reply for a comfortable victory, making it a miserable return trip for the players, and management from Cheshire.

Nelson said: “Connor Thompson had a good chance to put us 2-0 up on the break in the first half, but he didn’t take it.

"We then had a chance with a good header from a corner in the second half, but again we didn’t take it and ten minutes later we found ourselves 3-1 down.

"To concede five goals in 45 minutes in pretty embarrassing to be honest.

"The loss was down to individual errors, players not doing their jobs, but I also have to put my hands up and question whether I picked the right team.

"I stuck with the same players who had done well on Tuesday, but maybe I should have freshened it up a bit.

"However, some of the performances on the pitch were nowhere near.

"There were no positives to take from the game – in fact the only positive thing was that the fans kept singing.

"The players should learn from their mistakes, but (with the cup game coming up against Guiseley on Saturday) it’s a question of how quickly will they learn.

"If they are hurting as much as this defeat has hurt me then they should put on a performance in the next game, but of course we won’t find that out until the weekend.”

*There is an all Northern League derby clash coming up next Tuesday (October 5) in the Northumberland Senior Cup. Read the thoughts of rival managers Ian Skinner and Michael Connor inside.