Ottery boss speaks about cup final disappointment
PUBLISHED: 12:43 16 May 2019 | UPDATED: 14:04 16 May 2019
Ottery St Mary’s end-of-season disappointment was compounded by a Grandisson Cup final defeat against Kentisbeare on Wednesday night.
The Otters, who finished fourth in Macron League Division Three, taking on a side that had finished as runners-up in Division One and reached the Devon Senior Cup final, had held a 2-0 lead with an own goal and top scorer Corey Ringer netting.
However, a penalty awarded in the closing moments of the first half was followed by a wonderfully executed free-kick early in the second half and a later third - though with a huge element of 'off-side' about it, and the cup went home with the Kents leaving Ottery to lick their wounds and reflect on a season of 'what might have been'!
Speaking the morning after the night before, Ottery boss Dave Fairweather said: "It is hard not to feel for the lads - again! There was certainly an air of 'we should not have lost' in the dressing room post match and I think even the most ardent Kentisbeare follower would probably agree that, on the night, the better team did not win that match.
"We were the better team for long periods and looked like we were heading into the break with a 2-0 lead only for the award of a penalty in a situation where 'advantage' had been played in the area only for the spot kick to be then awarded!"
He continued: "No complaints about the second goal. When a player shows the nowse to arrow a free-kick into the top corner you simply have to - apart from question why the free-kick was conceded in the first place - hold your hand up and say 'good strike'. However, their third goal was certainly one of those 'with an element of off-side' about it and, post match, we were left feeling we had, yet again this season, got ourselves into a position where we ought to have gone in and won a game and yet emerged with nothing to show for what was another terrific all-round shift."
The Ottery boss then turned his thoughts, in general to the overall campaign. He said: "We started our campaign indifferently before hitting the ground and going on that wonderful run. What I have seen this season is genuine progress and feel we are a big step down the road to where we ultimately want to be as a club both on, and off the pitch. The sad thing is we have come up short in the very big games and I genuinely do not think that is down to a failing on our part in ability terms, but we do need to go away and work harder on certain aspects of our game to comeback stronger next season."
He continued: "Of course, we need to add a few players to freshen things up in the squad, but again I have to say I feel it is so important that we recruit the right players with the right mentality to buy into our whole thinking of 'togetherness' and looking to help us progress this club further up the football pyramid."