Andy Peaks felt there were “loads of positives” for him to take despite AFC Rushden & Diamonds’ Integro League Cup campaign being ended last night (Tuesday).
Diamonds were beaten 3-2 by Evo-Stik Northern Premier League Premier Division play-off contenders Buxton at the Dog & Duck.
Tom Lorraine became Diamonds’ all-time leading scorer as he struck his 51st goal from the penalty spot to give them the lead while Nabil Shariff also converted a late spot-kick after they had gone 3-1 down.
Peaks made seven changes to his team following the 4-1 victory at Northwich Victoria last weekend and Diamonds were boosted by the returns from injury for Callum Westwood and Ross Oulton, who featured for the final 20 minutes.
And, although his team were beaten, Peaks was far from downbeat.
“I was pretty pleased overall, there were loads of positives to take from it,” the Diamonds boss said.
“I made seven changes to the team from Saturday and it got some valuable minutes into members of the squad who will be important to us in the rest of the season.
“They gave it a really good go against a team who are going well in the division above and who didn’t make as many changes to their side as we did.
“We gave a good account of ourselves and in the end, I was a little disappointed we didn’t win.
“It has been a really useful competition for us, we have had four or five games in it and a lot of players have benefited from it.
“I want to win every game, of course, but this may not be the worst time to come out of it with the magnitude of the matches have coming up.”
Diamonds have a huge game in the Division One South at the weekend as they take on fellow play-off contenders Leek Town at the Dog & Duck.