Harrogate Railway players' attitude in second half of defeat to Worsbrough Bridge Athletic leaves Mick O'Connell disappointed
Mick O’Connell was not impressed with his Harrogate Railway players’ attitude during the second half of Tuesday’s NCEL Division One defeat to Worsbrough Bridge.
The Starbeck club went into the break two goals to the good courtesy of strikes from Elliot Holmes and Dan Thirkell but quickly saw their advantage evaporate and ended up losing the game 3-2.
O’Connell was left disappointed by the nature of the goals which the Rail conceded, but even more annoyed by their reaction to being pegged back, labelling their collective demeanour out on the field as “unacceptable”.
He said: “It was a really, really strange game. We were 2-0 up and comfortable at half-time.
“We’d hit the post and could easily had another goal. Worsbrough had a couple of chances but we’d defended our box well and I didn’t think we ever looked in danger of conceding.
“At 3-0 I think the game is dead and buried but 2-0 can be a dangerous score-line so we stressed to the players at half-time that we had to start the second half fast. We knew there would be a reaction from their lads.
“But we just never came out of the changing rooms and it was 2-2 very quickly after we conceded two extremely disappointing set-piece goals.
“After that we looked completely deflated and like a team who was feeling sorry for itself and that is completely unacceptable at this level.”
One positive that O’Connell was able to take from his side’s first loss of the campaign was centre-half Holmes finding the back of the net for the fourth league game in succession.
“I’m delighted for Elliot, really pleased to see him get another goal and getting his rewards,”the Rail chief added.
“We had a conversation in the summer about whether he was staying at the club for this season. He got his head down and worked extremely hard in pre-season and now he’s benefiting from that. He’s absolutely flying now and playing with confidence.
“He’s very good in both boxes and a real threat at set-pieces, which is why he’s got four in four.
“But, we have worked tirelessly on the set-plays, both attacking and defending them and while it’s good to see that work paying off with the goals Elliot has been getting, it makes the first two we conceded against Worsbrough all the more frustrating.”
Railway host Glasshoughton Welfare on Saturday, 3pm kick-off.