Peters insists Magpies' morale is fine despite third straight defeat

Maidenhead United are still looking up the table with the intention of forcing their way back into the play-off picture, despite losing 1-0 at home to promotion rivals Eastleigh on Monday, their third straight defeat in the National League.

The Magpies had looked to be dark horses for promotion after impressive home displays against Chesterfield (2-0) and Torquay United last month, but mistakes, poor decisions and rash challenges have counted against them in their last three losses to Altrincham, Weymouth and Eastleigh.

In both of their last two matches they looked more than capable of claiming a positive result, only for sendings off to derail their progress. On Friday Manny Parry was wrongly sent off for a fair challenge on Weymouth’s Pierre Fonkeu, however, Peters accepted Josh Coley was deserving of his red card for a retaliatory kick-out at a Spitfires player at York Road on Monday.

“We got a red card in our last game which wasn’t a red card,” said Peters. “And in essence that cost us. We got another red card today (Monday) that was a red card and it’s cost us again.

“The performance wasn’t great, but we were down to 10 men for a large part of the game, and it was only a matter of time before they went and got a goal.

“We recognised how good Eastleigh, but it was still a slightly sloppy, slightly slow performance from us.”

Despite suffering three defeats in quick succession Peters insisted that morale remains high and believes that with matches still in hand over rivals, they can drag themselves back into contention for a play-off spot. However, he accepts they’ve now left themselves very little margin for error. They sit 14th in the table on 39 points, eight points shy of seventh placed FC Halifax Town.

“We’ve got a very resilient group,” added Peters. “The morale is fine. They’re positive, but Barnet is now a must win game for us.

“We don’t want anymore losses. We’re still looking up the table and we want to go out and put things right as quickly as we can.

“Some of the boys are a bit leggy after playing in two matches where we had a man sent off. It was good to have Dan Sparkes back, and it’s good to have Sammy Barratt back as well. We’ve scored a lot of goals when they’ve been in form. It’s going to take Dan a little while to get to full fitness but to have these boys back is brilliant.”

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