Stamford Undone By First Half Display
By Richard Curtis
Manager Graham Drury apologised to the Stamford supporters for his side's display as they suffered their heaviest home defeat of the season on Saturday.
The Daniels were punished for a poor first half performance by visiting Marske United who netted three goals without reply in the opening 45 minutes.
Although Stamford improved slightly after the break, the damage had been done in the first half and there was no way back for Drury's charges who are now without a win in six Evo-Stik League Division One East games.
And the Daniels boss was far from happy with the lack-lustre display from the majority of his players.
He said: "There wasn't enough effort in the camp.
"We've found ourselves 2-0 down within the first 25 minutes against a good Evo-Stik side who were physically strong and who won all the battles.
"They bossed us and there was probably only three players - Rob Morgan, Joe Burgess and Jordon Cooke - who came out of the game with any credit.
"They were the players in trenches for us and the rest accepted the defeat after the first goal.
"I thought I was going to get a reaction after last week, but the heads went straight down after the first goal.
"We had a bit of a go at them at half-time and, credit to them for the second half, we were more organised and drew the second half which is the only positive I can take.
"We've got to take keeping a clean sheet in the second half as a positive, but the first two goals in the game absolutely killed us.
"When the confidence isn't there you give sloppy goals away and you're up against it.
"There is a lot of rebuilding to be done for next season. I'm seeing players who are really showing me their character now.
"One thing I've said to them is that you've got to earn the right for a deal next season and I don't think many of them have shown me they deserve that.
"It's either a total rebuild or we get the right players in with the right mentality to get the best out of the others on the pitch.
"I can only apologise to the crowd for that performance.
"I wasn't expecting that performance if I'm honest and the crowd deserve better than that."
After conceding eight goals in their last three games, the versatile Jon Challinor was dropped back into the centre of the Daniels defence.
However, they fell behind after just four minutes when a long throw into the box wasn't dealt with and the ball fell invitingly for Adam Wheatley to power home a strong finish.
Glen Butterworth then headed a good chance over for Marske as Stamford started like the side who had made the 160-mile trek from the North East rather than their visitors.
The Daniels rallied briefly with Joe Boachie going close after a smart turn and shot while Morgan's well-struck effort had to be gathered at the
second attempt by Marske goalkeeper Robert Dean.
The visitors doubled their lead midway through the first half as Curtis Round pounced on a misjudgement in the Daniels defence and arrowed a fine finish past Dan Haystead.
It could have got worse for the Daniels when Butterworth lobbed an audacious effort over Haystead with the underside of the crossbar coming to Stamford's rescue.
A third goal did duly arrive on the stroke of half-time though when the Daniels lost possession in the final third and a quick break released
Round who rounded off a surging run by slotting home past Haystead.
Stamford upped their game in the second half, but Marske's three-goal lead never looked like being threatened.
Boachie had a header cleared off the line by Wheatley after Dean had failed to gather a corner while Morgan saw a fierce free-kick on the edge of the box blocked by the visiting wall.
Haystead had to get down smartly to deny Jack Blackford after a weaving run before substitute Olly Brown-Hill saw a couple of late strikes competently dealt with by Dean as Stamford suffered their fourth home loss of the season.