Manager Danny Johnson has claimed his team aren’t receiving the credit they deserve following Saturdays 1-0 victory over Kendal Town at Hurst Cross. The gaffer, who reads the AUFC fans forum on a regular basis, feels the way his team have performed over the past 6 or so weeks has not been recognised. The gaffer also expressed his concern at the red cards his team are now seeing on a weekly basis.
‘It appears that whatever we do, whether we win or lose we just can’t please people. Six weeks ago we were shipping in goals left, right and centre, I then signed Craig Robinson and we have had a settled back four and we are now very difficult team to break down. I think we have only conceded something like 5 goals in 7 games and have become a real solid team that compete with every team in this league. Yes, I take the point that we haven’t scored enough goals but I would take winning 1-0 at home and drawing 0-0 away from home every week! We haven’t played the type of football I would have liked but we have found ourselves and we still are in a very precarious position. We have needed to dig deep and we will need to continue in that vein if we are to continue to move up the table. Unfortunately we need points rather than pretty performances.’
‘Refereeing decisions have become major talking points and I think that could be one reason why we haven’t scored as many goals as we would have liked. Historically we score lots of late goals, with 10 men you are generally always going to be up against it and all your focus turns to keeping the opposition out. I am the first to criticise the performance of my team but I have nothing but admiration for the way they have conducted themselves over the past 6/7 weeks. Their effort on the training ground has been exceptional, the amount of hard work they have put in is paying dividends and their fitness levels have been there for everyone to see, especially the last three games when we have been reduced to 10 men. I honestly don’t think this group of players are getting the credit they deserve.’
(Sending off’s - Whitby Town, Terry Smith 8th minute - Hednesford Town, Kevin Sanasay, 52nd minute & Kendal Town, Matty O’Neill, 60th minute).
‘I am not one for publicly criticising referees and I am not going to start now. What I would say is that refereeing is an extremely difficult job, one of the most difficult in football and we have a severe shortage of referees around the country. We have had three men sent off in our last three games and something like 8 red cards this season, which is an absolute disgrace. I only wished I could agree with the referees’ decision but I am failing to understand or see where they are coming from. Did Terry Smith really handle the ball against Whitby or was it a clear case of hand ball? Could the referee who sent off Kevin Sanasy at Hednesford just have had a chat with both players and maybe produced a yellow? Should he also have sent the Hednesford player off? One thing I am 100% certain is that Matty O’Neill should never have been sent off against Kendal on Saturday, that decision was disgusting and from where I was stood, which wasn’t too far away, Matty had possession of the ball and their lad was the one making the challenge! If that is a sending off then football might as well be a non contact sport as we would see at least 7 or 8 red cards a game.’
‘I don’t think the ref gave us very much on Saturday. Why he disallowed Danny Caldecotts free kick is still baffling me and the 2 and a half minutes he played over the allocated 3 minutes was probably an indication of what he was trying to achieve. He didn’t have a great game from our point of view. Still, we picked up 3 points and that’s what we set out to do before the game. The defensive lads have done great and have made us a really difficult team to beat. I am convinced in Aaron Burn, Marlin Piana, Kevin Sanasay, Chris Amadi, Sam Madeley and Matty Koslyo we have enough fire power and goals in us. I am certainly not concerned about that area of the pitch as I believe the goals will come. I thought both Aaron Burns and Marlin Piana were excellent on Saturday and fingers crossed we can get Mark Peers back soon to provide them both with something to feed on. However, the main thing for us is to stay solid, if we can do that then we will continue to compete and win more than we lose.’