Boreham Wood 2 Harrogate Town 1: Away form a real issue for Simon Weaver

Harrogate Town manager Simon Weaver said that his team need to address their poor away form if they are to sustain their National League promotion push.

Monday, 23rd December 2019, 3:49 pm
Updated Monday, 23rd December 2019, 3:49 pm
Harrogate Town manager Simon Weaver, left, and his assistant Paul Thirlwell look on from the sidelines during Saturday's National League defeat at Boreham Wood. Picture: Matt Kirkham

The Wetherby Road outfit conceded a 91st-minute goal on their way to a 2-1 defeat at Boreham Wood on Saturday, a result that means they are winless on the road since mid-October.

And while their home form has been excellent this term, Town will struggle to keep pace with the National League’s top-six if they don’t start picking up points on their travels.

“We have got to improve the away form,” Weaver said.

“Our ambition is still to get into the top-three, so it has to get much better. But, it’s not easy.

“There are some good sides and some big clubs below us and they’ll be looking to over-take us and get into that top seven, so we know that we need to improve.

“We so desperately want to improve the away form. We’re 19th in the table away from home, which is atrocious.”

Despite a strong first-half showing at Boreham Wood, Town fell behind on 14 minutes when Justin Shaibu set up Tyrone Marsh to slot a low finish past James Belshaw.

Alex Bradley got forward from right-back to deservedly level matters before half-time, unleashing a stunning long-range effort that found its way into the home net via the woodwork.

And that goal looked as if it was going to prove enough to earn the visitors a share of the spoils until Kabongo Tshimanga popped up with a last-gasp winner for Wood.

“It’s certainly a hard one to take, the nature of it,” Weaver reflected.

“It’s a real sucker-punch. I thought the game-plan was right because we dominated for large periods, but it’s got to manifest into results, hasn’t it?

“We looked really good, there was some really positive possession-based stuff, but it’s about results and too often away from home we’ve come up short.

“It’s a mindset thing. We have to be stronger and see games out and be ruthless in both boxes. For all our possession it took a 25-yard strike from the right-back for us to get on the score-sheet.

“We’ve also got to find a way of keeping the ball out the back of the net. We’ve got to defend better.

"We continue to work at it in training, but we need a bit more quality.”