Manager Nathan Haslam hails Blues’ second-half display in FA Cup loss at Bristol Rovers
The Seasiders’ FA Cup run came to an end as a strong EFL side made their quality count at the Memorial Stadium on Saturday afternoon, writes Liam Ryder.
The visitors did have their moments, however, with Junior Mondal finding an equaliser before Connor Simpson netted a goal which has been nominated for the ‘Goal of the First Round‘ award.
“They had plenty of possession to start with, but they weren’t really going anywhere with it,” Haslam told The Whitby Gazette. “They attacked down the right-hand side for the first time and scored.
“I’ve seen the replay and it was offside. For some reason the linesman’s not seen it and it’s been given.
“These are the things that go against you in a game like this against a side several levels above you.
"You need that bit of luck and we didn’t get it and that gave Rovers the licence to go about the first half on the front foot.
“We got ourselves level when they weren’t convincing defensively and we needed a bit more of that.
“At 1-1 you think that the lads have gotten rid of that bit of stage fright but it didn’t last long and Rovers were clinical.”
But despite being on the wrong end of the heavy scoreline, Haslam was more than happy with the way his side expressed themselves in the second half.
“The goal from Connor (Simpson) was one for the memory bank,” Haslam added. “It was a brilliant goal that was taken very well.
“For a moment you just think ‘what if?’ But it was short lived as they scored again shortly after.
“We’ve got working class lads and they were up against full-time professionals and they’re the moments you’re in the game for.
“I was proud of the second half. We played on the front foot and that was the message given at half-time.
“We showed no fear and we played with bravery which is what we needed.
"We had some spells and we take a lot of positives from that which we need to take forward into our league programme.”