NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Performance matches the weather as St Neots slide into the relegation zone
- Credit: Archant
Manager Matt Clements insists St Neots Town can’t afford to feel sorry for themselves after slipping into the Southern League Premier Division Central drop-zone.
Saints fell into the bottom three when slumping to a 3-0 home defeat at the hands of Needham Market on Tuesday.
Clements’ men produced an all-too-familiar performance in which they failed to score and were guilty of gifting sloppy goals to their visitors on a night to forget.
Saints have won only one of their last eight league games and Clements is scouring the market to boost his squad as they bid to drag themselves up the standings.
“It’s not about being worried,” said Clements. “What matters is sorting ourselves out quickly.
“We’re all working hard to do that and while it is tough to bring players in quickly, the wheels are certainly in motion and we will get some deals done as fast as we can.
“There is no point in moaning about the situation we find ourselves in. We need to ensure this tough run doesn’t continue.
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“I have a core group of lads who don’t deserve to be in this position, but all responsibility lies with me and I’ll take the repercussions if things doesn’t change in the next four-to-six weeks.”
Saints’ performance against Needham Market matched the weather on a damp and dismal evening at the Premier Plus Stadium.
They found themselves behind after just six minutes as visiting forward James Baker nipped between a couple of dozing defenders to find the net.
Only a couple of smart saves from goalkeeper Harry Reynolds prevented further damage in the first half while Saints received another let-off when Needham man Adam Mills headed wide when it looked easier to score.
Claudio Ofosu went closest to a goal for Saints in the opening period, but saw a shot from a tight angle rebound off a post.
Tom Wood then fired narrowly wide as Saints began the second half brightly, but it was the visiting side who made another breakthrough when Tariq Issa was left unmarked to finish a Mills pass.
Nabil Shariff saw a penalty appeal ignored and Ofosu was denied by a smart save from Market keeper Jake Jessop (who made one appearance in a St Neots shirt last season) as the hosts tried in vain to find a way back into the game.
And they were killed off midway through the second half when an unchallenged Daniel Morphew was allowed to head home an Issa corner.
A fine Jessop save from a Williams free-kick denied Saints a consolation on a night to forget.
“A mix of bad luck and errors hurt us again,” added Clements. “That is often the story when a team is on a bad run as we are at the moment.”
Saints will hope the script changes when they return to action this Tuesday in another home clash against Leiston, 7.45pm. They are currently a point from safety.