Wilson left with mixed feelings after double-header

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Kevin Wilson reflected on a mixed few days for Ilkeston FC and declared his young side are continuing to learn quickly as the season progresses.

The Robins lost 4-1 at FC United of Manchester on Saturday before then hammering relegation-threatened Stocksbridge Park Steels 6-1 on Monday night.

And despite the contrasting displays, Wilson remains happy overall with the way things are progressing at the New Manor Ground.

He said: “We’ve often won well against the sides below us this season so it was good to continue that trend against Stocksbridge.

“I’m disappointed not to have kept a clean sheet once again but, as with at Droylsden, being 3-0 up at half-time meant there was always a chance we could lose concentration at some point and concede.

“It wasn’t an easy pitch to play on which is often the way at this time of year, but we did well and it was good to see some of the younger lads score as well.”

Saturday’s game saw Ilkeston take the lead against the run of play but hosts FC United fought back strongly.

Wilson said: “I wasn’t happy with the display at the weekend. We set out to play them on the counter but didn’t squeeze them enough when we had the opportunity.

“We scored a good goal but conceded four poor ones and at bad times, especially the two after half-time as we’d told them to concentrate and be switched on after the break.

“But these things happen and at the end of the day it’s a young side that are always learning and and we’re continuing to build a future here. Some people still don’t believe in it but we do and we’ll keep doing what we’re doing.”

Yesterday (Wednesday) the Robins travelled to face Maidstone United in the semi-finals of the Conference Youth League Cup, with either Southampton or Colchester United awaiting in the final.

Wilson said: “Following the success in the FA Youth Cup it shows just how well these youngsters are doing, in that given this tournament started with 132 teams and we’re in the final four it’s another impressive showing and encouraging given some of these lads could be in the first team before long.”

Meanwhile, Wilson declared that striker Tyrell Waite is unlikely to return to the New Manor Ground after his loan spell from Notts County came to an end. Waite scored seven goals in his two-month spell, but it is understood County wish to keep the player for the remainder of the season.

Wilson said: “Tyrell did well and improved as his spell here went on. He’s still got to work a bit harder at times but we’re really grateful to Notts County for letting us have him back for a couple of months.”

The Robins boss also defended the recent departure of striker Aaron Hooton to Carlton Town, adding: “Aaron did really well last year but he wants to play games and I reluctantly let him go as I couldn’t guarantee him football.

“A few people have said it’s because we’d fallen out over him going on holiday during pre-season but that’s had nothing to do with it as that was done and dusted a long time ago, as are any issues like that which crop up here. I let him go with a heavy heart but he’s a good kid and I certainly haven’t ruled out him coming back next year. I just want him to go and enjoy his football.”

Ilkeston will travel to fellow mid-table side Nantwich Town on Saturday.