Borough boss rues lack of bravery in Trophy ‘calamity’

Brett Poate, second right. Picture: Ally Mac Photography
Brett Poate, second right. Picture: Ally Mac Photography
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Gosport Borough were the victims of an FA Trophy shock as they crashed to a 2-1 defeat at Southern League Cirencester Town.

Alex Pike must now lift his team for the trip to National League South Wealdstone tonight (7.45pm).

The Privett Park boss was massively disappointed with the manner of his side’s Trophy exit.

‘The weather was pretty atrocious and so was our play,’ he said.

‘Cirencester used the elements far better than we did.

‘It was a calamity all over the park for us.

‘Our movement was poor, the ball wasn’t moved well enough and when we did get it forward it wasn’t held up.

‘In the conditions we needed to keep the ball on the deck and we didn’t do that.

‘There weren’t enough leaders out there and we were not brave enough on the ball.’

Pike wasn’t happy with the home side’s first goal, which came after three minutes, as he felt scorer Charlie Griffin was offside.

Justin Bennett glanced the crossbar soon afterwards but it was the hosts who extended their lead just before the half-hour mark.

Again it was Griffin who did the damage, this time guiding a diving header into the far corner.

Borough pulled a goal back before the break with captain Brett Poate poking the ball home from a corner.

‘Once we got ourselves back into the game I thought with the elements behind us we would go on and get something,’ said Pike.

‘It was hugely frustrating that we didn’t.

‘Cirencester put five or six men behind the ball and in the end we ran out of ideas to break them down.’

Borough have little time to dwell on their exit with the trip to London following quickly tonight.

Pike’s team have forced their way back into the play-off positions with three successive league wins.

The manager regards it essential they pick themselves up and consolidate their top-five spot by getting a result at Wealdstone.

He knows it won’t be easy just 48 hours after a tough cup tie.

‘I am not a great fan of Monday night football because it gives you little recovery time,’ said Pike.

‘The reality is some of my players can’t manage two games in three days, so I have had to carefully manage my squad.

‘It is an important game for us. We need to come away with something.’

Rowan Vine and Andy Robinson come back into the reckoning after being rested for the Trophy tie.

‘We were clueless at Cirencester and unless we improve could end up getting thrashed,’ said Pike.

‘I am sure having certain players returning will make a difference.’

Gosport Borough: Seabright, Cuthbertson, Williams, Carter, Poate, Woodford, Dunford, Ramsey, Wort, Bennett, Barker. Subs: Vine, Wilde, Wheeler, Robinson, Wooden, Ashmore.