‘Would be unjust’ – Liam Watson makes Southport admission after Boston United draw

Southport manager Liam Watson following Kidderminster win

Southport manager Liam Watson was keen to take positives from their second-half showing against Boston United.

Despite a subpar first-half, they went in at the break level thanks to Niall Watson’s header after falling behind to Billy Chadwick’s opener.

The second-half brought a marked improvement from the Yellows as they pressed with more vigour and added sharpness to their attacks.

During the first 45 and prior to going a goal down, they were on the backfoot without being truly threatened but Sam McLintock, Zak Mills and Chadwick all tested Tony McMillan’s goal.

“I think it was a fair result, I think they were better with the ball but never worked the goalkeeper in the whole game, Tony’s conceded one – a deflected shot – we were at fault higher up the pitch, sloppily gave the ball away then Adam and Keenan can be stronger in their defender but it takes a bad deflection and goes in,” said Watson speaking to Off The Park.

“It was good to get a reaction, brilliant ball in from Tyler and Niall was Jonny on the spot. Niall and Connor needed to work harder in the first-half to stop them coming out and then we needed to engage, we did in the second-half.

“We won a lot more battles in the second-half than we did in the first, probably a little bit wasteful and we had a lot more chances than they did. Tyler Walton was very very good, Joe Adams when he come on done well, Dylan done really well he came on so it was pleasing.

“It was clear at half-time that Jack Bainbridge wasn’t well but we didn’t know, I think the first time he won a header was in the 32nd minute, he just wasn’t himself we know he gets around the pitch, he’s busy, lively, good in both boxes but that wasn’t there,” he continued, discussing Jack Bainbridge who was forced to withdraw at half-time and replaced by Dylan Vassallo, in his first appearance back at Haig Avenue following a loan spell.

READ MORE: Southport manager Liam Watson was keen to take positives from their second-half showing against Boston United

“He came off, went home and got his head down, hopefully, he will be alright for the weekend.

“I think we probably did create enough, we had quite a few bits and bobs, crosses into the box, they defended the box,” Watson said after he was asked on whether they did enough to win. He continued: “Niall’s had a one-on-one, I think he should’ve carried it on a little bit more, certainly when he comes across the centre-half.

“Tyler’s flashed one across the box, Connor Heath’s had four good headers on target. We created enough to win it but on the first-half performance, it would’ve been unjust to Boston.”

The point made it four points from two games after beating Blyth Spartans 2-1, seven days ago. As was the case on Tuesday night, a disappointing first-half required a reaction in the final 45 which was delivered in their previous two.

But the Southport boss wasn’t looking to dwell on it and noted that the aspects of their performance, shape and misjudging the opposition selection contributed to their showing.

“Against Blyth we were beyond terrible in the first-half, today I wouldn’t say we were that bad, we just didn’t press,” he said. “We had to change shape, probably didn’t have the right shape, we were guessing on their team selection and maybe got it wrong.

“At the end of the day, it’s two games, scored in both of them, we hadn’t been scoring, got four points and now we have to try get a good run of form, stay unbeaten and see where it takes us.”

The registration deadline for players until the end of the season closes on March 27 and ahead of Tuesday’s clash at Haig Avenue, former Bury, Brentford B and Dundalk midfielder Joe Adams signed.

There could be another arrival for the Yellows, meanwhile Off The Park understands Connor Woods is set to join Warrington Town for an undisclosed fee. The attacker wasn’t in the squad on Tuesday, neither was Jordan Archer but his absence was confirmed as an injury by the Port tactician.

Watson didn’t expand on Woods’ exclusion from the squad.

“You can see he’s a good footballer, a natural wide player, can go past people, he’s clever,” detailed Watson on their newest arrival. “Defensively he will [start] understand a lot more. He played 35 games for Dundalk but their season finished just before December so he’s had a period out but he’s kept himself in good nick, he’s been training with us for a couple of weeks anyway we were waiting for his international clearance.”

[Featured image: Julia Urwin – Southport FC]

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