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News Archive > Sport > Bradshaw disappointed with G’s lack of ´fight´

Bradshaw disappointed with G’s lack of ´fight´

By Tom Howe 13th December 2017

Bradshaw disappointed with G’s lack of ´fight´
STEADY EDDY: St Austell striker Liam Eddy skips through the Godolphin Atlantic defence during Saturday’s 6-1 victory at Poltair Park

ASHLEY Bradshaw accused his Godolphin Atlantic side of lacking 'fight' in their 6-1 loss at St Austell, the Sky Blues' 10th defeat in 17 South West Peninsula Premier Division games.

Player-manager Bradshaw, who took over in October following the departure of Kevin Richards, described the defeat as 'disappointing' after the positives he had taken from the game against Plymouth Argyle Reserves eight days earlier - a game in which Godolphin battled well against a team made up largely of professional players, ultimately losing 1-4.

It was a rampant display from the Lillywhites, especially in the second-half where they scored five times in the one-sided encounter. Mark Goldsworthy's first-half opener was cancelled out by Aaron Dilley two minutes after the break.

That was as good as it got for Godolphin, however, as Liam Eddy, (2), Kelvin Fyneboy, (2), and Matt Searle rounded off a comprehensive victory for the hosts.

Bradshaw revealed it had taken him a while to find perspective after the pain of the defeat and that he was looking forward to welcoming Tiago Soares back from county duty and 'hopefully' a new centre-half to strengthen the squad, as he looks to move on - starting with this weekend's visit of Camelford to Godolphin Way.

Speaking on Monday, Bradshaw said: "Saturday was very disappointing and has made a difficult two days of reflection. To go out and perform the way we did against Argyle the week before, where we were excellent, to the performance on Saturday was difficult to take. We were wasteful in the first-half and allowed St Austell to play to all of their strengths which I said to the lads before the game and set us up to counter.

"Eddy and Goldsworthy are a formidable partnership and you will do well to keep them quiet, in order to do that you have to limit their strengths. Eddy has pace to burn so I wanted the lads to not allow space in behind. St Austell will look to exploit this and get the back four turning, unfortunately we didn’t take this on board, allowed space in behind us and in the channels from the get go and paid the price going 1–0 down. We kept it to 1-0 and approaching the end of the half we had the chance to draw level and make it 1-1 but failed to take the opportunity although it would have been against the run of play.  

"At half-time I said to lads about the things we needed to improve and that we were in the game and had a great chance if we could improve our levels. I reiterated the plan to try and limit the supply to their front two and to be more effective in the final third. The second-half could not have started better with us equalising from a corner, getting us back into the game. Unfortunately, this was as good as it got for us, a sloppy pass in midfield and Eddy is through on goal to give St Austell the lead. Then Martin Watts' quality from corners resulted in three more goals. The manner in which we lost is what frustrates me, we have been in difficult situations the last couple of weeks but battled through together and put in some hearty performances. We just didn’t find the fight on Saturday when the performance went.

"I have spent two days reflecting on the game and finding perspective on the performance. Being honest with myself it is just one game and three points. I said when I took over it would be difficult and there will be some rough patches and poor performances. I have a lot to learn about being a manager and Saturday has highlighted some keys things to me I need to address and work on. We have Camelford, Falmouth and Newquay as our next three fixtures and we do not have time to dwell on one poor performance. We are always going to lose football matches it is the nature of the beast, what we learn and how you react is the true question."

The hosts opened the scoring after 14 minutes when a well-worked goal saw the impressive Jack Calver find Eddy and he laid the ball off to strike partner Goldsworthy to score from just inside the box. St Austell missed several chances to extend their lead, Eddy fizzing a shot just wide of the target, while Godolphin goalkeeper Ethan Fearn made smart saves to deny Kelvin Fyneboy and Calver. Despite St Austell’s dominance Godolphin managed to level the scores against the run of play when Dilley shot home from a corner.

They weren’t level for too long though as St Austell restored their lead in the 53rd minute. Jordan Dingle played a good ball through to release Eddy and he shot home for his 200th goal in the Peninsula League. Five minutes later it was three when Watts’ inch-perfect corner found Fyneboy and he headed in his first of the game. Now running riot it was four on 61 minutes, some indecision in the home defence saw Fearn come out, collide with his own defender, before Eddy lobbed the ball over the G goalkeeper and into the empty net for his second of the game.

Martin Giles then thought he had scored the fifth on 67 minutes, but his effort was scrambled off the line from another Watts corner. The home fans were celebrating three minutes later though and from another Watts corner Fyneboy headed his second.

With Searle on for his St Austell debut it was the young midfielder that completed the scoring in the 73rd minute when he finished off a great counter-attacking move, which he both started and finished. Definitely a debut to remember. There could have been further goals but Fearn impressed between the sticks, making a number of good saves, including one acrobatic save to deny Giles.

Godolphin, who remain eight points clear of the drop zone with a game in hand, welcome Camelford to Godolphin Way for a 3pm kick-off this Saturday hoping for a victory which could kick-start a jump in fortunes. Currently 16th, Godolphin face four teams in and around the bottom half of the table - Camelford (16th) and Ivybridge Town (13th) at home as well as Witheridge (20th) and Exmouth Town (10th) away -  before the end of January 2018.

<p">It's a big ask, however, but if Godolphin can pick up the 'fight' and earn six points from those two home games and draws on the road, they could find themselves confidently in contention for a top 10 position come February and wave goodbye to results like the one at Poltair Park as well as any lingering worries of relegation back to the West Division in April.  

By Tom Howe 13th December 2017

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