04:00PM, Friday 14 September 2018
Photo by Mick Vogel
Maidenhead United will be expected to bounce back from Saturday’s narrow defeat to Barnet when high-flying Halifax Town visit York Road this Saturday.
That’s the view of assistant manager Sam Lock, who admitted the Magpies fell beneath the standards they’ve set for themselves in recent weeks.
The Magpies have feasted upon opportunities in their past few matches, scoring nine times in a four-game unbeaten run but, Lock admitted, they fed on scraps against an organised Barnet defence.
“We’re not going to take it too hard,” said Lock.
“We’ll go away, rest up, and there are a few boys carrying knocks.
“It doesn’t get any easier though. We’ve got Halifax at home on Saturday, they’re flying in the league, but it’s another great challenge for the boys to go and play in and I expect us to bounce back.”
Against a well-drilled, efficient Bees’ defence, expertly marshalled by Craig Robson, Josh Kelly and Jordan Archer played bit parts in a match of few opportunities.
Having fallen behind to a third-minute strike from Josh Walker, the closest the Magpies came to a response was when Kelly appeared to have his legs taken from him in the box midway through the first half.
The decision to wave away the Magpies’ appeals incensed the United bench and puzzled Lock, even though he didn’t clearly see the incident.
“I didn’t have a clear view of it but, speaking to the boys, it was a penalty,” Lock said. “Incidents like that change games. If it’s given, who knows what would have happened?
"The feedback I’ve got off the fourth (official) was that there was contact, but that he (Kelly) was looking for it. Take out of that what you will, but he’s admitting there was contact and, for me, why would Josh Kelly go down in the box with the ball at his feet? For me that’s odd.”
Lock accepts they won’t play many better teams this season, but left the Hive feeling disappointed by the Magpies’ display.
“They’re a good side, they’ve won their last four or five games in a row,” said Lock. “But I felt we gave them one chance and they took it. We fed off scraps for most of the game, tried to force the issue. We weren’t at our best today and didn’t really deserve anything from the game.”
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