Sean Ray felt individual mistakes were responsible for all four goals Hastings United conceded against Lowestoft Town yesterday (Saturday).
United’s run of eight consecutive home draws in the Ryman Football League Premier Division came to an with a 4-1 reverse against the Trawlerboys after conceding twice in either half.
Ray, United’s player-manager, said: “It’s four individual mistakes that cost us and basic ones as well such as losing the ball in poor areas. They scored four goals from four mistakes.
“The ‘keeper (Daniel East) got blocked (for the second goal), but he’s supposed to be a professional, and you’ve got to be big and strong. The third goal was another basic error and they punish you these top teams.”
United left captain Lee Carey and usual right-back Elliott Cox on the substitutes’ bench, with Scott Manning coming into the starting line-up, Ray Freeman making his debut and Jamie Crellin taking the armband.
“We went with the side that we thought was going to win us the game or give us the best chance to,” Ray continued. “We knew they were a big side and I thought we would go 4-4-2 to match them.
“I thought first half we were good and up to half time we were the better side, but we came out in the second half and for 10 minutes we didn’t get started. They were organised off the ball, had a good shape, knew exactly what they were doing and they didn’t make basic errors.”
The result keeps United in the final safe spot of third-from-bottom and despite their success in the various cup competitions, they’ve won just once in the league since the end of August.
“It’s the players in this squad that have got us into this mess and they’ve got to get us out of it,” Ray continued. “We need a few players to start growing up, taking responsibility and start fighting for the cause. When players aren’t selected it looks like they’re happy to mope about or sulk and when they do come on, they’re not willing to change the game.”
Ryman Football League Premier Division standings (played-points): 1 Whitehawk 27-56, 2 Wealdstone 25-46, 3 Concord Rangers 24-44, 4 Canvey Island 26-44, 5 Kingstonian 24-43, 6 Lowestoft Town 21-40, 7 Margate 24-39, 8 Metropolitan Police 24-38, 9 Bognor Regis Town 26-38, 10 Bury Town 26-38, 11 Hendon 25-34, 12 Hampton & Richmond Borough 22-33, 13 Leiston 25-32, 14 East Thurrock United 23-29, 15 Lewes 28-29, 16 Cray Wanderers 27-29, 17 Enfield Town 27-28, 18 Wingate & Finchley 27-25, 19 Harrow Borough 26-23, 20 HASTINGS UNITED 25-22, 21 Carshalton Athletic 28-22, 22 Thurrock 20-20.