‘We need to be better’ - Gray

John Frendo missed a penalty against Sutton United. Picture: Bob Walkley

John Frendo missed a penalty against Sutton United. Picture: Bob Walkley - Credit: Archant

The overarching theme of St Albans City joint manager James Gray’s post-match interview after seeing his side beaten 4-2 by Sutton United was “we need to be better”.

He used the phrase half a dozen times to describe City’s inept defensive display and their inability to convert goal-scoring chances.

While John Frendo and Sean Shields found the net, both were also guilty of squandering chances; the former missing a penalty and the latter hooking a shot wide, both with City trailing 1-0 following a fifth minute goal from Jamie Taylor.

“We can’t give teams a lift up like we have been,” said Gray.

“If we defend like we do and don’t take our chance it’ll be a hard season. Defensively we were poor and we had guilt edged chances that we missed. It’s not a good recipe so we need to be better.

He added: “On reflection, there’s food for thought for us and at times we match them but the gals we conceded today, and throughout the season, are laughable; we need to rectify it.

“There’s no point pointing fingers; we’ve got to work on it and get better at it. This league is unforgiving and the difference between two sides [wasn’t much]. We match them and created enough but they defended better than us and put the bal in the net at the right times.”

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St Albans’ schedule does not get any easier, either. They travel to Ebbsfleet on Saturday before welcoming Bromley to Clarence Park next Monday. While it will be a challenge, it’s also a chance to right a few wrongs, according to the manager.

“We need to be sharper up front, in the final third and defensively,” he said.

“On general play we had a lion’s share of the game but we need to be better. I’m disappointed and so are the lads but we stick together and go again next week.”