Holland: ‘No excuses - we were poor’

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Paul Holland couldn’t hide his disappointment after Ilkeston exited the FA Trophy at the first hurdle on Saturday with a 2-0 defeat at home to Barwell.

Goals in each half from Owen Story and Joe Ballinger did the damage and sent Ilkeston out, a poor display compounded by Luke Foster and Luis Rose both being taken off injured in the first-half.

And Holland was left lamenting the inability for his side to turn league form into a cup win.

He said: “It was a difficult afternoon. We lost Anton Brown to a fitness test just before the game and then Luke Foster just a few minutes in, so that was two experienced players we were deprived of and then Luis Rose went off too, all of which isn’t ideal.

“But I’m not making excuses as I thought we were poor. Barwell did a job on us and their experienced players controlled the game, although I also thought the officials were disappointing today as well.

“We conceded some poor goals and went back to our old ways a little bit at times and spent too much time feeling sorry for ourselves.”

Related article: Ilkeston 0 Barwell 2 - match report

Attention now turns to Tuesday night and the visit of fourth-placed Rushall Olympic to the New Manor Ground for a league fixture.

Holland added: “I told the players today that I don’t want any moping and that we have to get on with planning for Tuesday. We haven’t lost any league points today and now have a chance to continue our good league form against a side who are doing very well but who also lost today.”