O’Neill bemoans ‘schoolboy errors’ as Steelmen prepare for Bradford

Corby Town captain Cleveland Taylor battles for possession during Saturday's 3-2 home defeat to FC United of Manchester. Picture by David Tilley
Corby Town captain Cleveland Taylor battles for possession during Saturday's 3-2 home defeat to FC United of Manchester. Picture by David Tilley

Assistant-manager Liam O’Neill says Corby Town must eliminate the “schoolboy errors” if they are to end their Vanarama National League North season on a high.

The Steelmen head to Bradford Park Avenue tomorrow (Wednesday) night knowing that another defeat will all-but seal their relegation, due to an inferior goal difference.

Their latest setback came at the weekend when FC United of Manchester claimed a 3-2 success at Steel Park in front of over 1,000 fans.

And O’Neill, like boss Tommy Wright, was left to bemoan the Steelmen’s inability to defend set-pieces with all three of the visitors’ goals coming from dead ball situations.

However, he insists Corby will go to Bradford tomorrow still believing that a “miracle” could happen.

He said: “You can’t continue to defend set-pieces like that.

“Every time a team is getting a free-kick in the final third or a corner, you are starting to think we are going to concede.

“We can’t carry on like that, we are just gifting teams goals and I can’t think in the last three games where a team has opened us up with good play and scored.

“Eight of the last nine goals have come from set-pieces and every goal we score has to be worked and the ones we give away are coming from schoolboy errors.

“It’s just so disappointing but we have to try to raise ourselves for Bradford and try to finish the season on a high.

“We just have to go to Bradford and see where that takes us. Miracles have been known to happen before, maybe one can happen at Corby.”

O’Neill, meanwhile, felt things could have been different for the Steelmen at the weekend if they had been awarded a penalty when the game was locked at 1-1 in the first half after Greg Mills appeared to be obstructed by visiting defender Scott Kay.

Referee Robert Massey-Ellis waved away the appeals and later awarded Corby a penalty, which Mills converted in stoppage-time at the end of the game.

And O’Neill added: “You have to take the rough with the smooth but the penalty at the end was one of those where sometimes you get it, sometimes you don’t.

“But the one in the first half on Millsy, which was a game-changing incident and could have put us 2-1 up, was shocking. It was a definite penalty.

“I am not going to slate him (the referee) too much but it’s alright when it’s in the 91st minute and the game has gone, you can always give a little penalty there.

“But when it’s an important stage of the game those decisions cost teams places in leagues and managers their jobs.”