Match officials and Ilkeston FC’s players bore the brunt of manager Kevin Wilson’s anger this week as the Robins’ good form came to an end.
A run of five unbeaten matches was brought to a halt thanks to a 2-1 loss at Stafford Rangers on Tuesday that was tainted by a controversial second goal for striker Simon Everall.
The decision that his shot had crossed the line despite Wilson’s son Ryan appearing to have cleared the ball in time left both players and manager fuming after the match, but all in all the Robins boss felt the incident merely rubbed salt in the wound following a poor Ilkeston display.
“I can’t moan at my players when the referee and his assistant don’t do their job properly but then I can’t moan at the officials when my players are putting in the kind of poor performances that they are at the moment,” he said.
“The second goal was nowhere near being over the line – Ryan said it didn’t even touch it – but the assistant somehow thinks it’s gone in.
“However, at the same time the players have to take a long look at themselves. We’ve lost by the odd goal yet again and a different attitude could have made all the difference.”
Ilkeston will now prepare for a difficult FA Cup fourth qualifying round trip to in-form AFC Fylde on Saturday, with a home clash against Grantham Town following on Monday night should a cup replay not be required on the same evening.
And Wilson says the players now need to respond favourably and of their own accord.
“It’s not for me to pick them up for the weekend, I’m sick of being the one that has to do that. It’s about time they picked themselves up,” he said.
“I earned a living out of having the right application and attitude but there’s people here being well looked after by this football club and they’re not doing it.”
And asked whether Tuesday’s events would lead to widespread changes for Saturday’s cup tie, Wilson said the decision may be out of his hands.
He added: “It’s hard at the moment because the injury situation limits us.
“Gary Ricketts came back tonight and got another knock, though he should be OK for Saturday, and there are other key players we’re missing so we have to work with what we’ve got for the time being.”