Alfreton Town boss Billy Heath was unhappy with the way his side conceded “cheap” goals in Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at Darlington, but refused to criticise his players’ effort.
“The biggest disappointment is that all three goals are cheap. It's not for lack of effort, even at the end everyone was still working as hard as they could, but sometimes it's the choices you make in these games and at times we were naive,” he said.
"In the first half we did really well, which seems a strange thing to say as we were 1-0 down. We got a couple of really good opportunities, but then we didn't step in when we should have done, didn't close the player down and suddenly we were a goal down.
“Before the goal and in the last 20 minutes of the first half we looked the better team. Had we been clinical and taken one of those chances then the game changes.”
In the absence of suspended top scorer Amari Morgan-Smith, Alfreton were punished as chances were spurned and sloppy goals conceded.
Resistance was at a minimum as Adam Campbell ghosted past several defenders to open Darlington's account in the 18th minute, yet just three minutes earlier Danny East had played Ben Tomlinson through for a great opportunity, only for the Reds' striker to stumble.
Then Tomlinson almost succeeded in taking the ball around the keeper, while Dominic Smith could not make clean contactin front of goal after Tomlinson flicked on a free-kick.
Campbell, despite a suspicion of offside, made it 2-0 in the 55th minute, and in added time Justin Donawa turned in a low free-kick.