‘We have to look forward’ – Bootle manager Steve McNulty eyes Colne positives ahead of tough Mossley encounter

Bootle manager Steve McNulty vs Kidsgrove

Bootle boss Steve McNulty admitted that he learned more from his difficult spell as Bucks than he did in his playing career.

Their losing run came to an end last Saturday as they held Colne to a point. Whilst they had chances to double their lead at 1-0, they were forced to settle for a point as they defended with 10 men for the last half-an-hour.

Jack McGowan added his second goal in as many games but the big chances of the second half was when Ben Hodkinson rounded the goalkeeper but could only fire over.

Despite the point, the Bootle boss noted positives from the performance and praised his side. He told Off The Park: “It’s going to be another tough game, I thought we were unfortunate not to pick up the three points on Saturday, if Ben takes his chance we got 2-0 up and gives us a bit of a cushion.

“I thought we would’ve held on but you take a point away from home, it stops a bit of a bad run that we were on. I thought it was an all round better performance, to a man I thought they were brilliant, worked hard, put a right shift in and created a few more chances than we had been before. Ben was getting in them positions, Jack, Nivaldo so I thought it was very positive. 

“We went out last Tuesday, a change of scenery, everyone was low – staff included – confidence was low, second-guessing everything,” he added. “You look at everything, I speak to Carl every day so we were trying to put our finger on it so we thought a change of scenery would be good for them, something different together, a chance to mingle, chat about different things.

“The mood sort of changed from the Thursday then I thought you could see it Saturday, training this week has been upbeat, lads have been working hard and it’s been good.”

After their team building exercise last Tuesday and a point gained on Saturday, McNulty feels like the mood is changing within the squad.

He continued: “Football’s a funny old game, we didn’t win a game in five, confidence is always going to be low. It’s probably the first time in my career it’s ever happened to me but I think I’ve learned more over them five weeks than I have in my whole career.

“I’m second guessing myself, the buck stops with me, I’m thinking and asking myself ‘am I doing things wrong? Am I being too harsh on them? Doing this and that wrong?’ But the moods seemed to have changed in the camp, it’s a funny old game, the good thing about football is we’ve got another game Saturday which we’ll be going into full of confidence.”

Mossley are the visitors to Vesty Road this weekend as Bootle look to return to winning ways. The Lillywhites have been in good form this season as they sit third in the table.

However, their away form has let them down with defeats to Skelmersdale United and Trafford on their record.

But the former Tranmere Rovers defender dismissed their away form going into Saturday’s contest, he continued: “We don’t worry about form, other teams form, we worry about ourselves. We know it’s going to be a tough game but one we’ve prepared for, one we’ll go into full of confidence and hoping to get the three points. 

“You’re stood on the side feeling helpless, that’s your team out there that you’re watching. We can’t change what’s happened before, we have to look forward, take one game at a time and that’s Mossley on Saturday. We’ve prepared all week and we’ll be going in full of confidence.”

[Featured image: Paul Moran]

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