Matt Longhurst Reacts to Whitehawk Draw - "There Could Have Only Been One Winner on Saturday and That was us
Matt Longhurst has reacted to Saturday’s 2-2 draw at home to Whitehawk in the Isthmian League.
“I thought we were the better team throughout the game. First-half we performed really well but conceded two very poor goals.”
“From our point of view, the big lad was a handful but it’s two headers and it’s not good enough. To be fair, the centre-halves held their hands up at the break.”
“Maybe our quality in the final third was lacking a little but the conditions played into that somewhat as well.”
“Then I felt we completely dominated the second-half. Whitehawk had a couple of half chances but we defended really well.”
“Other than that, it looked to me like there could have only been one winner in that match and that was us. I am delighted for the players. If we had got nothing from the match it would’ve been a disaster - they really deserved at least a point.”
“At half-time we spoke about getting an early second-half goal to give ourselves a chance and that’s exactly what we did.”
Going into the break trailing by one goal isn’t ideal, but to concede a second on the cusp of half-time must’ve been a sucker-punch for Ramsgate.
“It didn’t really change what I had to say in the dressing room because it was a similar goal to their first which was disappointing. We just made life harder for ourselves.”
“Equally, despite the two goals conceded, I thought we had played some good football. Perhaps our best this season and that was in awful conditions.”
“I said to the players that we must defend our own box better and improve in the opposite one. Fortunately our players are strong minded. They believe in each other out on that pitch and that really showed in the second-half.”
It could be said that the Rams boss would've taken a point if offered at half-time, but after seeing the match out, there must be a slight disappointment Ramsgate didn’t come away with all three points.
“The biggest thing for me is that the players are in that dressing room and disappointed they haven’t won the match. That just tells the story.”
“We’ve just come up against the team third in the division and we aren’t lucky to pick up a point against them. That was the minimum we deserved.”
“So yes, I’m probably a bit gutted we never won the game but this team has come far in the last six weeks.”
“I’ve felt in recent weeks that we’ve been getting closer and closer to what we want to see regularly. Now that the final pieces of the jigsaw have been implemented, we can kick on from here.”
“Also, it’s worth noting that Jude Arthurs was the best player on the pitch on Saturday. He’s 18. Some people seem to forget that. What a performance it was and that’s because he has good players all around him.”
Next up for Ramsgate will be a difficult trip away to Burgess Hill at the Green Elephant Stadium on Tuesday night.
“The key now is to be able to go and do it again. It’s no good doing what we’ve done on Saturday and then something completely different in the next game.”
“We’ll need to keep an eye on James Morrish as he has a bit of a sore back and Tom Chapman might need a rest after returning from a lengthy injury.”
“So we could freshen things up knowing that it’s two games in three days, we’ll see.”