Harrogate Town 0 Crewe Alexandra 1: Sulphurites slump to fifth straight home defeat
Zac Williams’ 31st-minute header proved sufficient to settle what was a closely-contested affair, with the hosts going close to a breakthrough of their own through Matty Daly, George Thomson and Luke Armstrong.
At the other end of the field, Town looked a lot more solid, leaving Weaver able to take some positives.
“I’m encouraged by the performance, whereas I thought that there was a gulf in class the other night,” the Harrogate chief said.
“I was disappointed because, although Mansfield are a top, top team, I do feel that we are in a lot better place in terms of ability than last year.
“But I was encouraged by the display today. I’m a lot more upbeat because I thought that we competed well throughout.
“I don’t remember them having too many shots on our goal, so we were a lot more solid, and then second half we changed our approach and pressed higher up the pitch and it didn’t find us out at all, against the league’s top goal-scorers.
“I thought that we caused them problems and just lacked that little bit of luck in the area at times when the ball was bouncing around. There were some very encouraging passing moves that led to moments, but we just lacked that little bit of ruthless edge.”
The game’s decisive moment arrived when Mickey Demetriou launched a long throw-in into the home box which Town failed to deal with, allowing Williams the opportunity to nod home from close range at the far post.
“It’s so frustrating because we’ve gone through it on the video and actually thrown 30 or 40 balls into the box yesterday [in training] from that position and stipulated areas for people to be and people to mark,” Weaver said of Crewe’s winning goal.
“It’s gone in there and it’s about people seizing the moment, but I actually think it became overly crowded attacking that first ball.
“Lads were so desperate to do it right as we had gone through it and two or three lads jumped for the same ball in the same area and got in the way of each other, which caused mayhem.”
Saturday’s defeat sees Town drop one place to 18th in the League Two standings, where they remain nine points above the relegation zone.