Poppies boss Cox rues a lack of 'ruthlessness'

Paul Cox was left to rue a lack of “ruthlessness” in front of goal after Kettering Town suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat at title-chasing York City.

Saturday, 25th January 2020, 8:56 pm
Updated Saturday, 25th January 2020, 8:58 pm
Action from Kettering Town's 1-0 defeat at York City. Pictures by Peter Short

The Poppies boss was delighted with the way his team performed at Bootham Crescent but, as well as having a goal ruled out in the first half, they were unable to convert their chances.

And they were made to pay as Jordan Burrows’ second-half goal proved decisive for the Minstermen.

Kettering remain in 17th place in the Vanarama National League North and are still five points clear of the relegation zone.

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Paul Cox applauds the Poppies fans after the final whistle

But Cox admitted to feeling “gutted” for the healthy away following of over 200 Poppies fans.

“The reality is that if you are not ruthless in the opposition’s box then, as well as you played, you’ll come out with nothing,” the Poppies boss said.

“I thought we played really well, we played some fantastic football and we dominated the first half by a country mile.

“We had a legitimate goal ruled out and we should have come in 1-0 up because there was nothing wrong with it. If the referee looked at it now, I think he will know he made a mistake.

Kettering were backed by over 200 travelling fans at Bootham Crescent

“It was a five-minute lapse in concentration that cost us. We lost Marcus Kelly to a hamstring injury and they made changes and changed their shape and we lost our way for a short time and conceded a sloppy goal.

“But, saying that, we have then had two great chances to not only get a draw but to win it. They were chances that really should have been put away

“I am gutted because we took a large following who were very vocal and really supported the boys and we didn’t get what we probably deserved.

“I did mention before the game that it would show how far we have come.

“We have come to a club who were favourites for promotion, have great resources, a great infrastructure and who are probably not only looking to get back into the National League but back into the Football League and we have played them on the front foot.

“The dressing-room, as it is now, is a little bit annoyed because we haven’t taken something from the game.

“The one thing I can say is that, from the players to the fans and as a club as a whole, we are heading in the right direction.

“Performance-wise, if we play like that then we will win more games between now and the end of the season.

“The performance levels have been brilliant but we just need to develop that ruthlessness to kill teams off.”

The Poppies are back in action on Tuesday night when they take on play-off chasing Altrincham in a re-arranged match at Latimer Park.