Alfreton Town manager Nicky Law called on his young side to show more mental strength after seeing them go down 3-0 at home to Mansfield Town on New Year’s Day.
The Reds had gone toe-to-toe with the Stags until just before half-time when the visitors took the lead, and after Law’s side were denied what looked a stone-wall penalty appeal on 56 minutes, Mansfield took over and bossed the game.
“I think there was nothing in the first half. We were defending a difficult wind and we have done that. That’s when you are looking for your players and the team to see you out to half time,” said the Reds boss.
“And then we concede a poor goal just before half time. Clayton loses the first header, Quinny has lost Geohaghan for the second header and you go in 1-0 down when it could have been so much better.
“What that does, it deflates you and gives them a massive lift. They have gone in 1-0 up in a game where they shouldn’t have done.
“Nil-nil at half time would have been a fair result and then we come out second half and for me, we have not made our mark on the game. We have gone and tried to play the way that they do and unfortunately, they are better at it than us.
“We have got involved in a brawl and we have not been able to cope with it. It is disappointing but fair play to them.
“We have gone over there and won on Boxing Day and what we have done is stir up a hornet’s nest. They have come here today with a reaction and too many [of our players] have not been able to stand up to that reaction and that is disappointing.
“I am not going to name names, but people you would think are in the team for that reason haven’t stood up to it today.”
Alfreton face Dartford, who drew 2-2 away at Ebbsfleet United on New Year’s Day, this Saturday at the Impact Arena.
Click here for the full match report.