It’s happened too many times now says Attfield

CROWS boss Paul Attfield cut a despondent figure after watching his side throw away another match they should have won comfortably.

It was almost as though he wasn’t surprised by the defeat to St Margaretsbury in which his players relinquished a two-goal lead and lost the match in the final minutes.

And why would he have been? It is not the first time this season Royston have lost a match after letting slip a seemingly commanding lead and it is now up to Attfield to pick his team up for Saturday’s important FA Vase match against Leiston.

“It’s happened too may times. Not a few times – too many times. There have been too many poor second half performances,” said Attfield.

“Football is played over 90 minutes. We steamrolled the first half 2-0 up and it could have been more. Second half we conceded a poor goal and they wrestled control of the game from us and we just completely lost it.

“I think everyone saw it. It wasn’t difficult to see. It was a game of two halves wasn’t it. We could have conceded more and we just couldn’t string passes together in the second half.

“At the end of the day we haven’t got a fit back line but we had enough of the ball in the first half and we just had to compose ourselves and continue playing as we were but we couldn’t do that.

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“We conceded a really poor goal early in the second half and from then on the game was just too open because we couldn’t pass the ball and we kept giving the ball away.”

It’s been very much a story of two steps forward, one step back for the Crows this season. Every time they appear to be building up a head of steam in the league – out of nowhere comes a slap in the face.

Attfield has said on a number of occasions this season that he wanted his team to cut out the errors that blighted the previous campaign in order to give themselves the best possible chance of promotion from the Spartan South Midlands Premier Division. But it’s clear there are still a number of lessons that need to be learnt before this talented team can really begin to push on.

It must be said that the Crows’ best performances this season have come when they have had a settled defence across a number of games. Injuries and suspensions meant Tuesday night’s backline was anything but.

Saturday’s match against Leiston promises to be a tough encounter with the Eastern Counties Premier Division side currently enjoying a good run of form and challenging for promotion.

However, Attfield should welcome back regular first team players Ross Collins, Ryan Lockett and Tom Malins for the match after they were left out against St Margaretsbury.

“They (Leiston) are challenging for promotion in their league and I’ve had them watched and they haven’t got any weaknesses,” said Attfield.

“We will have to be on top of our game to make sure we get a result and the desire levels have to be spot on.“We’ve got home advantage but our away form has been better than our home form this season so we’ll have to pull something out of the bag.”