Highworth Town manager Jeff Roberts handed his players a dressing down immediately after they crashed out of the Buildbase FA Vase at home on Saturday.
The Worthians lost a fiercely-competitive second round proper tie against Combined Counties League outfit Knaphill 3-1 at the Elms and Roberts thought that his troops ‘embarrassed’ themselves with their second-half showing.
After a goalless first 45 minutes, Charlie Postance’s hat-trick won the day for the visitors, the Knaphil man netting a spectacular long-range lob, latching on to a long ball and rounding goalkeeper Kent Kauppinen and then reacting quickest to fire home from a fortuitous rebound to seal his treble.
Chris Taylor’s late penalty after Ryan Stanners’ shot was adjudged to have been handled did little to lift Roberts’ mood.
“The second half; we just stayed in the changing room, to be honest,” said Roberts in The Swindon Advertiser.
“I thought we gave them too much time on the ball, were going in to challenges we didn’t need to go into and I thought when we had the ball, our distribution of the ball was poor.
That’s why we grabbed them all over in the dugout and said: ‘it’s not good enough’ because at the end of the day, I don’t mind players giving me 90 minutes and grafting but to come off in the second 45 minutes is embarrassing.
They’ve embarrassed themselves because I know that, potentially, they’re all good players but at the end of the day you need 11 good players on the pitch and we’re going to have to work hard as well.
I think, especially second half, our attitudes weren’t there. Especially, when the second goal went in, heads went down and we lost our shape a little bit. It’s disappointing, knowing how good we are on our day but we’ve got to be consistent. We shouldn’t be letting sides dictate us.
Going out is disappointing. I thought we could go maybe another round or two but it is what it is. Good luck to Knaphill in the next round but we’re all disappointed.”