Neil MacFarlane’s reflections on the FA Cup exit at Stourbridge
By Matty Paddock - 07/10/2018
Posted 2 months ago
Neil MacFarlane admitted in the wake of Saturday’s FA Cup exit at Stourbridge that the team should never have “gifted” the hosts a way back into the game at 2-0 down.
Harriers, looking to exorcise some Cup demons at the War Memorial Ground following two horror shows three years ago, looked to be well on their way to a victory this time around.
By the time they’d gone 2-0 up thanks to an Ed Williams goal and Joe Ironside’s penalty, they’d had enough chances to have been out of sight, with Declan Weeks, Dan Bradley and Ironside all going within inches of further goals.
After costly errors presented the Cup specialists with a way back into the tie, the surge of momentum carried the hosts over the line as they saw out the final stages with alarming ease at 3-2 up.
“Ultimately I’m really disappointed with the result, it’s a really sore one for us,” said the boss, speaking at full-time.
“We had total control of the football match and had the game won, and we just gifted them a way back into it.
“It’s a harsh lesson for our young defenders today… we were cruising at 2-0 and had numerous chances to put the game to bed.
“[We] were in total control but we gave them a moment that enabled them to get back into the game.
“It’s a harsh lesson to make sure that we see games out.”
Harriers were backed by around 600 supporters at Stourbridge. MacFarlane knows how they’ll be feeling and stressed he’s every bit as frustrated with the set-back.
“They’re rightly disappointed, and nobody [is] more than myself,” he added.
“I’ll stand up to it and take the responsibility as that’s the Manager’s job, but I have said to the group that we are all together, as we have been when we’ve been winning, it’s the same when we’re losing.
“We’ll have to respond at Bradford next week.”