Marty Williams rued ‘basic’ defensive errors as the Royal Navy fell to a 7-3 defeat against the British Army.
The navy outfit twice led the clash at Aldershot Town’s Recreation Ground, with United Services’ Ben Booker on target.
However, the army fought back and went into half-time 3-2 up before turning the screw after the interval.
Williams, who is a first-team coach at AFC Portchester, admitted individual mistakes were key to the loss.
The head coach said: ‘We started like a house on fire at a really high tempo and got the early goal.
‘Unfortunately, we made individual and basic defensive errors which gifted them their goals.
‘We had worked to get the first goal and then we looked comfortable at 2-1 after regaining the lead.
‘But individual mistakes in our own final third gifted the army chances and we fell behind at the break.
‘At half-time, we had a change in personnel and asked the boys to be on the front foot more.
‘For 20 minutes, we had the army on the back foot.
‘But we couldn’t capitalise and then we got hit on the counter-attack, which put us 4-2 down.
‘After that, our shape and positional discipline fell out a bit and we didn’t recover from that fourth goal.
‘We were chasing the game and they got three more at the end – after we had made a tactical change to be more aggressive.
‘However, we still finished the game pushing forward and being positive.’
Royals striker Andy Todd was also on the scoresheet for the navy from the penalty spot.
Although they suffered a loss, Williams believes the scoreline did not give a fair reflection of the game.
He added: ‘The result certainly didn’t reflect the game.
‘I’m a big believer in getting what you deserve and the way we defended we deserved to lose.
‘But it was unfortunate the defeat was by so much.
‘We were the first navy team to go to the army and score three goals against them for some time.
‘When you score three goals away from home, you’d think you’d get something out of the game.
‘In the first half, we looked like we could score every time we went forward and more than matched them.
‘Experience and a little bit of quality in the final third on their side told the story.’