Hucknall Town fell to a frustrating 1-0 defeat away at bottom club Southwell in another game they should have put beyond a resolute side before half time.
Town were beaten by a solitary breakaway goal to leave them wondering what might have been
Frustrated boss Andy Graves said: “Obviously it was disappointing to lose, but if we had taken our chances yet again it would have been a different story.
“I was not angry with the players, unlike the Swanwick game as the way they were in the dressing room after it would not have helped.
“It’s fair to say that our fears going into January came home big time today, irrespective of who we played, but having had so many first choice players missing who had been playing and giving consistency in winning six on the bounce and then be hit by Jimmy’s and Joe Atkinsons injuries and Niall Thompson leaving is going to have a huge impact sooner rather than later.
“At times we did not look like we had played together and that’s not surprising as this group haven’t played all at the same time.
“Young Ben Jones I felt deserved his full debut which, if circumstances had been different, he may not have got but he certainly made a huge impression and took the opportunity well.
“We are all disappointed, frustrated and confidence is low but we have a little game on Saturday against leaders Belper which should be a cracker.”
Townwere missing first choice players James Beddingham (Injury/wedding), Cayne Maxwell (injury) Joe Atkinson (injury), Kajally Danson (holiday), Cameron Davidson (suspension) and Niall Thompson (signed for Sheffield FC) added to the fact initial starters Johnny Hamilton (failed to arrive) and Nathan Francis could not to leave work until after kick off made life difficult Town.
The first half saw Southwell have to defend deeply for large parts of it, but Town were guilty of not taking chances yet again.
Adam Nelson missed an easy chance which could have settled a Town side that the longer the game went on and the chances missed looked apprehensive.
Town caused several goalmouth scrambles, but they could not force the ball home and, at times, desperate defending denied them.
The warning sign for Town was there when, from a rare foray forward, Southwell gained a corner which was headed in at the back post but ruled offside.
The second half saw Town have lots of possession, but little penetration apart from a Michael Banister lob, which was cleared off the line,
Joe Ashurt had his shot well saved, Nathan Francis saw his effort turned over and Leon Aikman got into a great position, but failed to hit the target to the following yellows supporters’ frustration.
At the other end a cross nearly deceived Paul Brady but he tipped over for a corner.
Town were becoming frustrated as they could not get any rhythm going as Southwell defended in numbers and happy to waste time by kicking the ball out at every opportunity and this frustration and was compounded when a poor free kick given on Towns right was knocked to the back post and an unmarked Southwell player headed home.
Town tried but were unable to force an equaliser as several goal mouth scrambles again were defended.