Football
Villa urged to learn lessons

By Jamie Arrowsmith 22/03 Updated: 22/03 18:58

JOINT Fairfield Villa manager Paul Oakes has urged his side to learn their lessons quickly after watching them conceded a costly goal to the last kick of the game for the second week running on Saturday.

Villa had to settle for a 2-2 Midland Combination Division One draw at Coton Green after conceding a last gasp penalty, just seven days after they were beaten 2-1 by league leaders Littleton with another last minute strike.

The Recreation Ground side have the chance to gain quick revenge over Littleton tomorrow when they go there in the first leg of the President Cup semi-final and Oakes is hoping to avoid another late horror show.

“It is mind-blowing to be hurt by a goal so late in the game two weeks in a row,” he said.

“We also did it against Archdale earlier in the season and it proves costly when you look at the league table.

“I can accept it to a point as the squad goes through something of a transition but there comes a point when you have to say enough is enough and lessons need to be learnt, and fast.”

Villa took a second half lead on Saturday when Adam Pillinger and Dean Beagan combined well for Ryan Sproston to head home but the hosts equalised when taking advantage of defensive hesitancy.

Beagan restored Villa’s advantage and looked to have given them all three points before debutant goalkeeper Paul Maynard conceded a penalty which was duly converted.

“It was not a great game but we were the ones trying to create things and deserved to win it,” Oakes said.

“Two defensive errors have cost us in the end and there was no doubt about the penalty. Paul enjoyed a good debut and looked very solid but unfortunately gave away the penalty so close to the end.

“We suffered a number of late withdrawals again which is never helpful but Jak Allbut came on and did a good job for us, that was a pleasing thing to take away from the game.”

Looking ahead to tomorrow’s trip to Littleton, who top the Division One table, Oakes said it is important his men keep themselves in the tie.

“We have a fair amount of experience of two-legged semi-finals at the club and it is vital we are still in it going in to the second leg,” he said.

“We got beaten 2-1 there earlier in the season, by a late goal ironically, and we gave them a really good game a couple of weeks ago so we know we are capable of getting something.

“I always prefer to worry about my own team rather than the opposition and that is what I will be doing again on Saturday.

“Everybody needs to be fully focussed but if we are there is no reason why we cannot get the result we are looking for.”

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