Goal-shy Yellows head back to drawing board
TIVERTON Town assistant manager Hedley Steele says the players are focusing their efforts in training on solving their problems in front of goal.
The Yellows have only bagged one goal in their three matches all season – Owen Howe's consolation strike in the 2-1 loss to Paulton Rovers last week.
After missing a host of presentable opportunities in Saturday's 2-0 FA Cup preliminary round defeat to Clevedon Town, and with a trip to Bishops Cleeve on Saturday, Steele says extra attention is being paid to solving Tivvy's problems in front of goal.
"Saturday's loss to Clevedon was disappointing, particularly in front of goal, so that is something we are going to be focusing on in training," said Steele, whose side's game against Taunton Town on Monday was postponed.
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"What made it even worse was that we played pretty well in most other areas of the pitch but it was our finishing that let us down."
Manager Mark Saunders has warned his misfiring strikers he will look to sign another forward should they not start scoring goals.
The comments came after again lamenting the Yellows' lack of potency in front of goal following the Clevedon defeat, although Saunders is unsure whether the club's budget will stretch that far.
"Something has got to change because if the strikers don't start scoring then I think I will have to look at bringing other options in to the club," said Saunders.
"Having said that, everyone was guilty of missing chances because we had some glorious ones throughout the match (against Clevedon).
"You would like to think bringing in someone else is a possibility but you have to ask, will the budget at the club stretch that far and allow us to do that? Probably not.
"We will just have to keep faith with the strikers we have got and have the confidence in them that they will turn it around. It is starting to get on my nerves now because we have played three games and could have won all three.
"We had about eight or nine great chances to score while they had a couple of half chances in the first half and two chances in the second half, which they scored.
"We have four good strikers at the club but they are all struggling to hit the back of the net at the moment."
Tivvy spurned a number of clear chances in the defeat at Clevedon, with Jules Emati-Emati, Joe Bushin and Howe all failing to hit the back of the hosts' net.
The Yellows controlled large periods of the match, only to concede the first goal of the game after 54 minutes against the run of play.
A second followed on the counter-attack with six minutes remaining, with Tivvy pushing players up in the hunt for an equaliser.
And Saunders admitted that, other than his side's woes in front of goal, he was satisfied with every other aspect of his team.
"We are doing everything else that we need to do on the pitch except for sticking it in the back of the net," he said.
"Everything else is fine – that is the one area that we need to improve on really.
"It is not good enough frankly. I feel sorry for the defence because they defended ever so well on Saturday.
"On the flip side at least we are creating chances and you would be more worried if we were not, but we just need someone to start scoring goals."
Midfielder David Steele echoed Saunders' sentiments, expressing his disbelief that Tivvy had failed to convert one of their many chances.
"It is easy to say after the game but if we had won that game 6-2 then it would have been a fair result," he said.
"At one point Kevin Hill and I looked at each other and almost started laughing because we could not believe we were missing them.
"We were so comfortable and creating so many chances that we couldn't believe we lost.
"The keeper did pull off a couple of saves so at least we were working him but we still missed too many chances."