Coventry Sphinx manager Luke Hopkins has described his side’s 6-1 FA Vase Second Round defeat at Westfields on Saturday as being a total right off.
Hopkins told the Sphinx website: “The whole day was a write off in the end. ”With the events on the M42 half of the team managed to get through the junction and half didnt, a ten minute window between cars meant some arriving at 1.30 and some at 3.30 and two players in Carl O’Neill and Ashley Wilks, my keeper and top scorer not even getting to the ground as by the time they were due to arrive, it would have been 5.30pm ”We changed the starting eleven with what we had there and put a team out and kicked off at 4pm. To be honest, Westfields were very understanding and acted in a sporting way, only wanting to play the game with eleven v eleven, even if it meant being a 4pm kick off. ”We had spent Tuesday and Thursday evenings working on different bits ready for the game and that all went out of the window. You can’t plan for someone threatening to throw themselves off a bridge, and that killed our whole game plan, and general day etc. ”The game started and i think the whole situation of the day had effected us and disjointed the players. The focus of the game was lost and we found ourselves two behind in 12 minutes, The first goal came from a mix up and resulted in the ball hitting Adam Bilic on the back and going into his own net and the second was a good worked goal by Westfields which we couldn’t do much about. then after twenty minutes we were back in the game through Matty Bannister and we were the team on top for the reminder of the half and didn’t really want half time to come. ”But half time did come and it was a positive team talk at half time and I was under no impression that the game was over and thought if we could pinch a goal in first 15 minutes of the second half it was game on.
“I hadn’t even walked back to the dug out and the ref had given a soft penalty against Matty Fowler with the lad going away from goal and a second booking to be sent off, 3-1 down inside first 5 minutes of the second half. The fourth and fifth goals came too easy before two were sent off for Westfields and us having to take our goalkeeper Darren Pratley off injured as a result of one of the dismissals and put Ashley Jackson in the sticks, and the game finished with us looking for our second and a little bit of pride and a break away goal with the forward finishing pass Ash in goal. Not a great day all round and its a shame the whole situation came about on a FA Vase game, as that’s us out the cups and only the league to concentrate on, so I’m sure we will see who wants to show some passion and fight and kick us on in the league and finish as high as possible.”
Source: Coventry MAD