Gainsborough Trinity manager Steve Housham believes that his players need to wake up after the goalless FA Trophy home draw with Ashton United this afternoon.
Housham believed that his side were fortunate to still be in the competition and admits he may have to be ruthless with the players ahead of the replay on Tuesday night.
Speaking after the game, he said: “That’s two games in a row where we have not performed. The positives are that we are still in the competition and managed to get away with it and hopefully we can put it right on Tuesday.”
“It’s like an illness going through everyone. We can’t keep the ball, can’t pass it. We do things in training where we are getting it wide and doing things. You give players chance after chance and they are not producing. It’s down to me now to be ruthless and change a few personnel.”
“The conditions did not have an affect as they played well and it’s the same for both teams.”
“The players we had on the pitch were good enough to win that game. That’s no disrespect to Ashton United as they are a good side and I knew they would work hard, but we didn’t have that drive and ambition.”
“We have to wake them up so they are ready for Tuesday. I will assess the injuries we have got and see who we have available. It’s not an ideal game that we want but we are still in the Trophy.”
Decent chances came and went for either side with both goalkeepers pulling off some good saves to keep their clean sheets intact.
Housham had made two enforced changes to the side that beat Chorley last time out.
Assistant manager Darryn Stamp lead the line due to injuries to Nathan Jarman, Marc Newsham and latest recruit Anthony Wilson.
The second alteration saw Jamie Yates in the starting lineup having impressed off the bench in midweek and in the defeat to Tamworth.
The Blues were facing a side a division below them in Ashton United but they were not a side to be taken lightly.
The Robins had won their last four coming into the final qualifying round and had only come away defeated in two of their fixtures away from Hurst Cross this campaign.
They started confidently and had the first opening of the game striker Jeff King broke into the box and shot across goal.
The wind was a continual problem for both sides and playing into the wind seemed to have a distinct disadvantage.
Ashton came close not long after when Joe Melia forced Jan Budtz into a low save after the initial effort was blocked.
Ten minutes later and the visitors came within millimetres of breaking the deadlock.
A Martin Pilkington strike from the edge of the box looped up off Dominic Roma, gathered pace in the wind and went over Budtz. The Big Dane only just managed to recover, as he clawed away the deflected shot on the line.
The Blues best chance of the half came from Stamp. The player/assistant manager met a Yates cross at the far post and his header was comfortably claimed by United’s keeper.
Just before the break King got into another good position for the Robins and from a tight angle could not trouble Budtz.
Half time was met by a deluge as the heavens opened at the Martin and Co Arena to add to the already problematic conditions.
The Blues began the second period with more gusto and that combination of Yates and Stamp proved the most potent threat to the visitors.
Fifteen minutes after the break, the two combined once more as a low Yates cross was connected by the sliding Stamp and somehow Paul Phillips in the Ashton net managed to turn it over the crossbar.
The Robins responded with their clearest opening as danger man Pilkington was found at the far post and somehow side footed wide when inside the six yard box.
Another chance soon followed for the Greater Manchester side as Melia got himself into some space in the box to force Budtz into a sprawling save.
Midweek match winner Liam Davis then entered the fray and had an impact within minutes.
The former Grimsby youngster accelerated to the bye-line to cut the ball back for Stamp who unfortunately slipped as he looked destined to put the Blues into the lead.
Stamp injured himself in the process but did have time to knock the ball down for Yates to hit a thunderous half volley wide before being substituted.
Both sides went for the winner but to no avail with Trinity having another excellent chance in the fourth minute of injury time when Roma leapt at the far post to head a cross into the path of Jonathan D’Laryea but the ex-Mansfield player could not make contact.
Gainsborough Trinity: Budtz, Roma, Lacey, Brogan, McKay, Picton, Russell, D’Laryea, Drury (Davis 67), Stamp (Binns 75), Yates (Bemrose 87). Subs: Rigby, Hedge.
Ashton United: Phillips, Coo, Pearson, Gorton, Connor, Lees, Melia, Gee, Pilkington (Steadman 87), King (Banim 75), Morning (Chadwick 55). Subs (not used): Vincent, Steadman, Samburg.
Bookings: Stamp; Gorton.
Referee: Mr R Holmes. Assistants: Mr C Buxton, Mr S Coop.