A disappointing week that saw Knaresborough Town eliminated from the FA Cup was compounded by a 1-0 home defeat to AFC Emley on Tuesday night.
Town’s FA Cup adventure was brought to a halt on Saturday August 30 as West Allotment Celtic scored the only goal of the game to seal their passage to the first qualifying round.
Brian Davey’s men were then beaten by the same scoreline four days later as they dropped down to 12th in the Division One of the Northern Counties Eastern League.
Davey refused to blame an FA Cup hangover for his side’s first league defeat of the season and conceded AFC Emley were the better team on the day. He said: “I thought they were a very good side, probably the best side we have played so far this season.
“They were a bit sharper, a bit quicker to the ball than us. We need to get our forwards fit though, that’s our problem at the moment.
“Hopefully we can get one or two back fit so we can send out a better team for the FA Vase match on Saturday (at Chester-le-Street Town).”
Davey’s men fell behind to their opponents from Division One of the Northern League in the eighth minute when Sean Reid fired home from the penalty spot after a trip on Liam Hudson.
Town were then forced to play the remainder of the tie with just ten men after Will Lenehan was sent off after 33 minutes in a case of mistaken identity.
Davey said he was disappointed to see his side go out of the competition but he was pleased with their performance against a strong side.
He said: “We knew they were a decent side but we set ourselves out really to keep it tight and to take the game to them in the second half.
“However, we lost a man so we were playing a good side minus a player so we made it very hard for the rest of half whilst we tried to consolidate.
“I thought we got back into the game in the second half and there was not a lot between the two sides.”
Despite Paul Hagreen saving the resulting penalty, after Lenehan’s dismissal, Davey said it was not the first time this season his side have given away reckless penalties and said they need to learn to stay on their feet.
He said: “We have given two or three penalties away in the last few weeks so we have to try and cut that out and stay on our feet.
“It was our first home game in the FA Cup and we had a crowd of 265. At our level that’s fantastic, we’re getting people down and it’s brought in a little bit of extra support and money for the club. It’ll be a tough couple of weeks with the games coming up but that’s what you want.”