King's Lynn boss remains upbeat
Paddy Davitt Marine 1, King's Lynn 1: Lynn chief Carl Heggs admitted his players were distraught after blowing the chance of Unibond Premier Division top spot.The Linnets were closing in on a Merseyside league and cup double to move level on points with arch rivals Boston United until Tony Davies' towering 77th minute header cancelled out Anthony Robinson's cool finish.
Marine 1, King's Lynn 1
Lynn chief Carl Heggs admitted his players were distraught after blowing the chance of Unibond Premier Division top spot.
The Linnets were closing in on a Merseyside league and cup double to move level on points with arch rivals Boston United until Tony Davies' towering 77th minute header cancelled out Anthony Robinson's cool finish.
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“The lads were absolutely gutted in our dressing room,” said Heggs. “It was very quiet but for me that is actually pleasing because its shows how much they care and how much they want to do it for each other. I told them its only October, not the end of the season. I said to them, 'Do we let the point we've got here be the one that stops us getting promoted or getting in the play-offs or do we go on and make sure it is the point that maybe gets us promoted or gets us into those play-offs?'
“There's still another 25 or so games to decide whether I'm right or wrong I'm just very disappointed to draw a game we should have won but my players gave their all and battled to the end in difficult conditions.”
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Davies' close range header from Stephen Brown's late corner was all the more galling for a manager who prides himself on set piece organisation.
“The four was Boycie's (Andy Boyce) man,” said Heggs. “Everyone in our group knew that and he was suicidal after the game but he's 19 years old with a big future. He's come a long way - they all have - and its testament to that progress how sick we all feel.
“We went 1-0 up here last week and saw it out so I don't think it's really about learning how to close out games. They had some pressure but on clear cut chances we had enough to have got the win.”
Owen Story skied over from less than six yards in the blustery conditions during a purple patch prior to the interval for Heggs' men. Danny Spencer's cute free kick nearly embarrassed Marine keeper Tim Dittmer when it squirmed under his wall but the home stopper managed to claw away.
Dittmer then parried Ben Muirhead's angled strike before the former Man United trainee's snap header clipped the outside of his post from 12 yards.
Robinson latched onto Heggs' flick to despatch his tenth of the campaign seconds after the restart but Marine gradually pinned Lynn inside their own half aided by the wintry element.
Danny Gay was grateful to see Stephen Johnson's point blank sidefooter cannon off the inside of his post and roll back along the goal line into his arms.
Marine dangerman Jamie Rainford glanced wide but Davies' close range bullet header arrowed into the postage stamp right above Carl Palmer stationed on Gay's post.
“It feels like we've let two points slip and that is the negative,” said Heggs. “The positive is we have come away to a tough place and got a point because they make it hard for teams on their own patch. That's two defeats in 14 which is not a bad record for a whole new squad and a whole new side.
“Owen puts one over from six yards when it's easier to keep it under the bar. Their keeper makes an unbelievable save from Spence's free kick and I should have had a penalty when I moved the ball to the side and the defender kicked my shin pad.
“At half time I asked them to just keep doing what we had been, stay nice and tight, and we managed to get in front again. You think, 'great, just hold on, hold on and they will get frustrated,' but we switched off for a set piece. It only takes a second or two.”
Both sides failed to really master the blustery conditions - but Heggs refused to offer excuses.
“It's the same for them as well as us,” he said. “What I would say is playing in that sort of wind is the worst for footballers. You
don't know if the ball is going to land at your feet or three yards away because you can't judge it.”
Marine: Dittmer, Callacher, Fowler, Davies, Jackson, Hussey, Brown (Crewe 66), Parle, Rainford (Rushton 81), Cumiskey, Johnson. Subs (not used): McMahon, Bell, Molyneux.
Goal: Davies (77)
King's Lynn: Gay, Webb, Spencer, Palmer, Boyce, Rowe-Turner, Story, Magunda, Heggs (Appiah 66), Robinson, Muirhead. Subs (not used): Smith, Rose, McAnally.
Goal: Robinson (47)
Stoppage time: 1 min / 3mins
Referee: M Salisbury (Lancs)