St Neots Town paid the price for a ‘crazy’ seven-minute spell when suffering defeat in a seven goal thriller on Saturday.
Matt Clements’ men were beaten 4-3 at Kings Langley in an action-packed Southern League Premier Division clash.
They hit the front early on through skipper Luke Knight’s first goal since December and dominated long spells of the game, but that nightmare spell, in which they conceded three times in quick succession, proved to be their undoing.
“The first 15 minutes were great,” said Clements. “We settled well and scored a brilliant opening goal from Luke, who was by far our best performer.
“But the few minutes that followed were crazy and ridiculous. We weren’t even close to be competitive and coming in 4-1 down at half-time was nothing short of embarrassing.
“We fought back as a team in the second half and arguably created enough chances to at least draw the game if not win it.
“I respect the fact that there were tired legs after playing in a derby on Thursday, but it was a shame to follow up that performance and result with one like this.”
Only a pair of smart saves to deny Tom Meechan and Nabil Shariff prevented them from adding to Knight’s breakthrough, but they were pegged back when Kings Langley levelled with their first serious attempt of the afternoon.
Mitchell Weiss hit that leveller and then completed a quick turnaround with a looping shot that evaded the grasp of Saints goalkeeper Finlay Iron. Those two Weiss strikes sandwiched a Louie Collier effort which hit the post.
The hosts’ advantage was then extended by Saints defender Liam McDevitt who mis-timed an attempted header back to Iron and could only watch on as it crept inside the post.
And Saints found themselves even further behind five minutes before the break when Jorrell Johnson was afforded time and space to put away a free kick.
Clements’ side rallied in the second half as leading scorer Dylan Williams was denied by a fine save from Kings Langley goalkeeper Martin Bennett.
Shariff eventually succeeded in cutting their arrears with a quarter-of-an-hour to go and saw another effort blocked on the line.
Knight did manage to find the net again as he slammed in a 25-yard free-kick and he also came closest to snatching an unlikely point when firing over from a tight angle during six minutes of stoppage time.
Saints’ hectic schedule continues with a trip to Dorchester tonight (Monday).