Gaffer's thoughts after the defeat at HighburyShrewsbury Town Manager Paul Hurst was bitterly disappointed with his team’s performance after a 3-0 defeat to Fleetwood Town.
Town started brightly, but their early season defensive problems came back to haunt them as goals for McLaughlin and Ball (2) gave Fleetwood a comfortable victory.
Hurst called the performance unacceptable and asked the players to have a long hard look at themselves after a disappointing night in Lancashire.
“It’s not good enough,” expressed Paul.
“I felt sorry for the fans that travelled. In fairness I think we’ve had spells where we were in the game, but as soon as it went 3-0, maybe even 2-0, we had too many that decided it was too much hard work and it becomes a chore and ultimately, for me, that’s not acceptable.
“We take too many touches at times. We play backwards. When we listen to instructions and do the things that cause them problems we do okay, but we’re unwilling to do some basics at times.
“I don’t know if we think we are better than we are, but there’s been some harsh words said in the dressing room and ultimately if players can’t take that or think that that’s anywhere near what I want to represent my club then we’ve got massively different views.
“One or two perhaps can take some slight credit and look themselves in the mirror and think they’ve put a shift in, but after that, the rest were nowhere near”.
Town had some chances in the opening 30 minutes, but a second goal after half-time resigned Shrewsbury to defeat and brought an end to Paul Hurst’s honeymoon period.
“I don’t want to be disrespectful to the opposition, they’ve just beat us 3-0, but I felt we were well in the game,” said Hurst.
“I thought we started the second half as if we were going to have a go, but then the second goal is something of a killer and yet we still felt we had enough of the ball in and around the box without making the ‘keeper make too many saves.
“I think perhaps that honeymoon period is over and now I am seeing a true reflection of the squad and the team, rather than when we had the initial uplift when we came in the door.
“I guess to a degree it has surprised me, because I was hoping that we were all on board and I was trying to make it extremely difficult for the opposition, but in the end it was far too easy”.
On a night where Ian Black and Jim O’Brien picked up injuries, Hurst questioned the player’s attitude and called on them to step up and be counted.
“Ian’s hurt his ankle I believe”, said Paul.
“Jim has locked his knee as well, so on that front it doesn’t get any easier either, especially with Abs suspended for another two games, but what I would say is that we play Fleetwood a week on Saturday and they will be extremely confident of progressing into the next round of the FA Cup
“We had people that look like they are suffering with confidence. As much as I want to help with that there is a time when you have to be a man out there and you have to play through difficult times.
“We’re struggling at the wrong end of the table in League One and I don’t know where some of the players would end up. It’s their career and obviously I’m now the manager and I’m part of that.”