Isthmian League

Saunders | “We didn’t play anywhere near to the levels that we can”

Whitehawk manager Shaun Saunders react to yesterday’s last gasp defeat at East Grinstead Town.

“I thought we were too direct last night. In possession we weren’t good enough, it was rushed, we didn’t build up and it was too direct for me. We played into their hands a little bit, and I think that’s where we went wrong last night and snatched at chances as well when had a lot of balls into their box – how many times did we put the ball in the box last night? And we didn’t really capitalise enough on the second balls either.

I think the result Saturday took a little bit out of us. We were hugely disappointed at Chatham to not come away with what would have been a hard-earned point, and maybe it took a lot out of us and it affected us last night. We didn’t play anywhere near to the levels that we can, and I think that’s also where we went wrong.”

“You have to look at these things. I think we’re in a false position – I’m biased but I think with the squad that we’ve got we should be higher up the table, even though we’re sitting nicely in third. The points that we’ve dropped, some of them are not good. And our away form does need to improve, without a shadow of doubt – it’s cost us so far. But we’re still in a great position: we’re third in the league and if we can win two or three of our remaining games — which are difficult, I know — then it should be enough for us to cement a place in the playoffs.

We’ve got a lot to be positive about. We definitely need to be better away from home – it’s something we’ll talk about tomorrow when we regroup, and hopefully Monday you’ll see a much better performance from us.”

“We’ll have a discussion tomorrow night, a positive one about where we feel we went wrong over the last couple of games. Up until the Chatham game we were in a really strong position but we’ve had a couple of results that weren’t in the script. In both games I think we were a little naive, we could’ve controlled the game better in both of them. Last night we threw the kitchen sink at it to try and get a winner rather than be content with what would have been a valuable point at a difficult place.

Sometimes if you can’t win then you don’t lose. And I thought we were a little bit naive last night – Saturday was unfortunate because: 95 minutes gone, 1-1 and a last gasp penalty, you have no control over those situations.

We’re frustrated, but it’s my job to build them back up because we’ve had a great season so far and it could end really well. If we regroup quickly and get a good result on Saturday, then we’ve got a lot to be positive about.”

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