Dagenham & Redbridge 4 Harrogate Town 2: Simon Weaver apologises for poor showing

Harrogate Town goalkeeper James Belshaw didn't receive much by way of protection from his defence at Dagenham & Redbridge. Picture: Matt Kirkham
Harrogate Town goalkeeper James Belshaw didn't receive much by way of protection from his defence at Dagenham & Redbridge. Picture: Matt Kirkham

Harrogate Town manager Simon Weaver went as far as to apologise to the club's supporters for his side's performance at Dagenham & Redbridge on Saturday.

The Wetherby Road outfit took an early lead when Angelo Balanta diverted Joe Leesley's corner into his own net, and despite being pegged back soon afterwards, they went 2-1 up on 24 minutes courtesy of Brendan Kiernan's first goal in yellow and black.

The scores were levelled again before half-time, however, and Dagenham netted twice without reply in the second period to seal a 4-2 success, leaving Weaver to reflect on one of the worst performances he has witnessed by his team in a number of years.

"I'm really disappointed, for ourselves, but most of all for the supporters," the Town boss reflected.

"They got behind us all game, gave us some real vocal support and I can only apologise for what was probably the worst performance I've seen away from home for probably two or three years.

"Today will leave a bitter taste in our mouths and there are a couple of sleepless nights ahead before we can get back on the training pitch.

"It really hurts losing like that. We're not used to losing like that. We've got to man up."

While happy with some of what he saw when his side were in possession, Weaver was not at all impressed by the way Town defended in East London.

"We were lousy. Defensively shoddy, very vulnerable every time the ball went over the halfway line. No-one was actually in the moment. There was a distinct lack of character," he added.

"Unfortunately, defensively, as soon as we were dispossessed there wasn't that sound structure behind to give us a good platform

"Every time we went forward we looked like we had the ability, our centre-forwards caused them all sorts of trouble. Defensively though, as soon as a mistake was made, we didn't have the character to stiffen up and sharpen up.

"It's a real blow for us on the sideline because we lost energy, we lost bite, where's the thunderous tackle? Where's people chasing stuff down? What are we seeing? Centre-halves are getting bullied out of situations.

"We've have to man up a bit and be better, 100 per cent. I can only apologise again to the travelling support."