“We did not turn up” – admits Leiston boss Driver

Leiston manager, Glenn Driver

Leiston manager, Glenn Driver - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

Leiston boss, Glenn Driver, admitted that his side “did not turn up” following Tuesday night’s disappointing 1-0 defeat at mid-table Wingate & Finchley.

The main stand at Wingate & Finchley FC, before kick-off on Tuesday night

The main stand at Wingate & Finchley FC, before kick-off on Tuesday night - Credit: Archant

The Suffolk side had won their previous five matches, since the turn of the year, to climb to fourth in the Ryman Premier, and with games in hand over all their lofty rivals.

But they could have few complaints after their fine run ground to a halt at Summers Lane, in the London Borough of Barnet, undone by Steve Wales’ deflected free-kick on 77 minutes.

“We haven’t turned up tonight,” rued Driver.

“We weren’t very good at all, to be honest. We didn’t really get at them at all, and we have gone too direct, too quick.

Action from Tuesday night's game at Wingate & Finchley. Leiston left wing-back Seb Dunbar is on the

Action from Tuesday night's game at Wingate & Finchley. Leiston left wing-back Seb Dunbar is on the ball. - Credit: Archant


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“Against sides like Wingate, who do not concede a lot – I think they have only scored 36 goals and conceded 35 goals – you’ve got to play between the lines, but we didn’t do that tonight.

“We sort of got the ball forward too quick, and so played to Wingate’s strengths, with their two big six foot-plus centre-halves, and Matty Blake and Niko (Muir) didn’t get much joy out of that really.

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“Matt (Blake) had a good chance with the (second-half) header, but I thought Gareth Heath had the best chance later on.

“He was just unfortunate to lift it over the bar, but he was in there and he was getting forward, which is what we want to see from our midfield players.

“We didn’t turn up as a group tonight, and I don’t put the performance down to individuals, because we win as a team and we lose as a team.

“We unfortunately didn’t give a good enough account of ourselves,” added Driver.

However, the Leiston boss, despite Tuesday night’s defeat, is still happy with his side’s current position of fourth, within striking distance of top spot.

“I’d definitely take where we are at the moment, especially for January where we have played six, won five and lost just one,” continued Driver.

“We’ve also only conceded four goals in those games, while we’ve scored 22, so I’m pleased with that.

“The conditions spoilt the game a bit, because the pitch was very hard and there wasn’t really a true roll on it.”

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