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Manager Miller left frustrated by away defeat

A dominant display failed to bring any rewards for Cottesmore Amateurs who went down to a 3-2 away defeat at Ellistown on Saturday.

Wasteful finishing and hesitant defending proved to be Cottesmore's downfall in the Leicestershire Senior League Premier Division clash much to the frustration of manager Neil Miller.

He said: “It was a day of what ifs. It was nearly but not quite.

“We played the better football and created the better chances but lost 3-2.

“It’s very simple that whatever level of the football you play at – whether it’s the Premier League or Sunday football – you can’t concede two or three goals and expect to win every game. We are not going to pick up many points like that.

“We need to learn keep our concentration for 90 minutes, especially at setpieces which are really not our friends at the moment.

“It is something we must work on and take a bit of accountability for.”

Cottesmore had gone into the match looking to follow up a victory from their last outing against Saffron Dynamo and started brightly.

They created several chances in the opening 20 minutes, but were undone at the other end when Ellistown beat the Cottesmore offside trap and Kai Smalley had an easy tap-in to open the scoring.

Despite going a goal behind, Cottesmore still looked the more lively side and created good chances with Ben Richards going close with a header and Harry Stannard seeing a shot flash just over the crossbar.

However, it was Ellistown who doubled their lead four minutes before the break when Smalley was left unmarked from a corner to score his second of the game.

Cottesmore then saw their hopes of getting back into the contest dashed on the stroke of half-time when Tom Bendle was felled in the box, but the referee over-ruled his assistant and waved away their appeals.

Miller commented: “It’s very easy to say, but it was a clear penalty.

“The linesman was stood 10 yards away and flagged for a penalty yet he’s over-ruled by someone who was 50 yards away.

“They are there to help referees make important decisions and he had the experience and knowledge to do that.

“It could have made a big difference to the game just before half-time.”

Despite the penalty refusal, Cottesmore continued on the offensive after the break with Richards seeing a header cleared off the line and Stannard narrowly failing to connect with a Sam Cayley cross.

The pressure finally paid off when a quick throw-in found Jordan Smith who beat his man before firing in a cross which Bendle tapped home from close range.

As Cottesmore continued to push for an equaliser, Ellistown were able to exploit the gaps and Zakari Adams added their third with five minutes remaining.

There was still time for Cottesmore to snatch a second with Stannard converting well from a cross, but it was too little too late to salvage a draw.

Miller added: “We didn’t get that bit of lady luck, but we have only taken three points from our last two games which is mediocre.

“We are not ripping up any trees at the moment and, although we deserved at least a point, the players are not fully committed to every part of it at the moment."

Cottesmore: Clare, Warman, Cayley, Cropper, Richards, North, Bendle, L Smith, Seals, J Smith, Stannard.

Cottesmore boss Neil Miller. (4390262)
Cottesmore boss Neil Miller. (4390262)

Three goals in the first half sent Cottesmore Reserves tumbling out of the President's Trophy against FC GNG's development squad on Saturday.

The Reserves found themselves with an uphill task after the triple blow in the opening period with Jamie Hunt's solitary strike in the second half proving to be just a consolation.

Cottesmore had started the better of the two sides at Westray Park and were on the front foot after playing some good football

Nathan Gray latched onto a long ball from James Green but saw his shot saved by the keeper while numerous half chances also fell to the home side.

Debutant Jake Robson went close while Hunt found luck was not on his side as he tackled the keeper only to see the ball rebound to a GNG player to clear.

GNG had not had much of the ball but looked dangerous on the break and it was a mistake from the home side that let them open the scoring.

A back pass dropped short and the pacy GNG forward rounded Shaun Greetham in goal to score.

The second goal came shortly after as the home defence stood still when a visiting forward went down under Greetham's challenge which allowed another player to square the ball and double the lead.

A third goal arrived before the half-time break when poor marking left an easy finish to leave Cottermore with a mountain to climb.

After some home truths at the break, Cottesmore started better and began to find their way into the game.

Jack Tomlin linked up with Gray who had the ball in the net but was adjudged to be offside.

Substitute Jordan Wilson then found himself in on goal but could not find the net and even a scramble from a Gav Waddington free kick resulted in the ball taking a lucky bounce and away from the goal.

Hunt managed to pull one back with 13 minutes left on the clock and, following this, Green hit the post but it was too little too late in the end.

Cottesmore: Greetham, Adams, Hamnett, Waddington, Baker (Bowers), Dawson, Green, Robson (Wilson), Hunt, Gray, Tomlin (Rawlings).

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