Burscough manager Paul Bowes has called for a reaction from his squad after their defeat to rivals Skelmersdale United.
The 4-1 loss meant back-to-back defeat for the Linnets after they lost to Squires Gate at the turn of the year.
Their preparations were far from ideal as their boss missed training and was absent from the sideline through illness.
Thomas McNamara fired home a brilliant strike to pull a goal back before the title-chasers raced away with it after Mikey Howard and Danny Mitchley put the game beyond doubt.
Bowes believes the second defeat in succession for Burscough is another learning curve for his side who have already enjoyed formidable runs of form this season.
But the disappointment raised alarms for the Burscough boss and without his guidance on the sideline saw a lack of leaders in the intense clash.
He told Off The Park: “It was a bit of a bad week all round I haven’t seen the lads since before New Year, Squires Gate was the last time I seen them, didn’t get to train at all last week with isolating.”
“Spoke to a couple of the lads after the game on Saturday, they said they started well, had a couple of chances which they missed then Skem scored two and they went in 2-0. They felt positive and felt they could create chances of too many Indians not enough chiefs, I think it was just headloss second half there was just no leaders.
“I think Skem are a good side, we drew 2-2 at our place, if we were a bit more organised and done better at keeping them out but it’s all it’s and but’s, they win fair and square on the days. They’ve got a boss group of lads, if anyone deserves to go up this, the performance and longevity they’ve had, they deserve it.”
Bowes has called for a reaction from his players, heaping importance on the visit of Vauxhall Motors.
“That’s the first time we’ve lost two games on the bounce all season, it’s something new to this group of lads but it’s something it must learn from. They seem to have something to learn from every couple of weeks and they seem to pass the test every time, it’s no good losing two games in the bounce.
“We can’t lose on Saturday, it becomes a massive game for us whether it is for Vauxhall or not becomes a good game for us, personally. The lads owe me a performance, they’ve got to go put things right.
“They try get it up fast, wide. Our strong points are our full-backs, if our lads on it on the day we can be on it on the day we’ve got the quality. Last time we started slow against them but prevailed at the end but the lads have got to prove a point on Saturday and beat them comfortably over 90 minutes.”