Managers Reaction: Barnet (A)

Ian Evatt’s thoughts as we exit the FA Trophy

Bluebirds boss Ian Evatt said there were plenty of positives to take from our FA Trophy exit against Barnet on Saturday. With our promotion charge continuing in the National League, some crucial  fixtures are to come and the Gaffer rotated his squad with several changes to our last league line up at Dover.

“We made six or seven changes; we obviously had to rest some of the senior ones. We’ve had some long journeys, Dover, Boreham Wood, Barnet and Solihull to a certain extent, so they needed a rest it’s as simple as that.

We wanted to win the game today, regardless of whether you think that or not with the side I picked. I trust all of my players, some of them didn’t come up to scratch today but the positives are that for sixty minutes I thought we were okay.

There was no extra time and penalties and now I can get some good rest into my players for thirteen massive league games to come.”

Evatt believes the scoreline flattered the home side, with the Bluebirds looking the better side for the first hour of the encounter. Olly Dyson and Lewis Hardcastle both forced Barnet goalkeeper Scott Loach into making two top drawer saves either side of the half time break.

“I thought for sixty minutes we were on top, dominating the game. But from one bad decision from the keeper to throw it out quickly and Olly Dyson losing the ball in his own half, we just lost confidence and lost belief and they went on to win the game.

I think 3-0 flattered them, I thought we were the better side for sixty minutes but it’s a harsh lesson and I’m not here to make excuses.

We’re away from home but we’ve had some good opportunities, we’ve hit the bar and had some good situations first half, I can’t remember what they had in the first sixty minutes to be honest, not too much. As I said for the first hour I thought we were the better team, it’s just what happened after that first goal which wasn’t pleasing to see.

But, the positives are that we have got rest into key players, rest into some of the other starters and we can have a good week on the training ground next week to prepare for Dagenham.”

With all eyes on the league leaders from around the National League, the Gaffer is adamant that his side have what it takes to push for promotion to the Football League as we the face 13 cup finals to come.

“People are going to say ‘oh have the wheels come off’ but we should have beat Dover by six the other day and I’ve made seven changes today. The lads haven’t really played much but I thought for 60 minutes today we were the better team, so everyone can doubt us all they want but I know my lads will show up on Saturday and play to the best levels we can and get the result we want.

For a reality check, we are seven points clear, with our goal difference that is three games other teams have to catch up on us. So, we’re in an unbelievable position, we can’t get frustrated about losing today and losing against Dover, I expect a good week on the training ground and then we will be fully prepared for Dagenham and to kick on for the rest of the season, whether that be at home or away.”