Marine manager Neil Young discusses Northern Premier League title race as mistakes deny Runcorn Linnets win

Marine striker Niall Cummins celebrates after netting a hat-trick against Market Drayton

Marine manager Neil Young was made to rue mistakes again as they suffered late disappointment against Runcorn Linnets.

Days earlier, Niall Cummins’ first-half hat-trick set Marine on course to three points as they saw off rock-bottom Market Drayton Town who had a consolation goal after Ashley Rawlins utilised the elements to score from his own goal-kick.

On Tuesday, Dean Winnard fired the Mariners in front against Linnets as they looked to close the gap to league leaders Workington but two minutes from time, they failed to hold on with Ryan Brooke heading in the equaliser two minutes before the death.

“It’s always easier when you go 3-0 up in the first 20 minutes, Niall Cummins back in the side, that’s what he does. Anything around the box in the six-yard box, he’s probably the best finisher,” Young told Off The Park.

“The weather wasn’t great but we put the game to bed early doors, probably should’ve had more, conceded a silly goal. Overall, happy with the performance. 

“When you concede late on in a game, it’s disappointing.

“I thought generally we were pretty good, the attitude was spot on. I think if you look at the teams we’ve played who’ve been in and around us, when they’ve beaten or even get a point off us, in terms of celebrations for getting a point, we’re there to be shot at.

“We’ve got to withstand that but generally I thought we were good in the game, we were disciplined, strong, limited them to little.

“We didn’t create a great deal ourselves but once we got the goal, we didn’t really have to. We played on the counter-attack, had a great chance ‘keepers made a great save just before they scored but always disappointing to concede a late goal but happy with the performance. 

“It’s another mistake, it’s hurts even more. Particularly when you’ve weathered the storm, it’s not just the lateness of the goal, it’s the way we conceded, when you put such a good performance in it’s always disappointing.

“That’s football, you’ve got to move on very quickly because we’ve got to take the positives from it, it wasn’t a Bootle or Mossley performance, in fact in terms of performance and attitude, it’s probably been the best since before Christmas that’s the positives.

“The negatives, we’ve made another mistake for the goal, we have to deal with that and move on. 

“It’s all about the run-in, we’re trying to win the league and that’s still a massive possibility but we’ve also got to prepare for the playoffs because that’s a massive possibility and I’ve been there before, won them, lost them, hopefully, we’ll prepare right for them. 

“When you get to this stage of the season, they’re all difficult games.

“You only have to look at Clitheroe, went to Market Drayton on Monday after drawing with Rylands on Saturday – which is a fantastic point and being 2-0 up – anything can happen.

“I don’t look at any game being more difficult than the next, I put full faith in my team, that they’ll go out, if they put a performance in we’ll go close but we’ve got to eradicate mistakes, we keep making mistakes, we keep conceding goals.

“I think mistakes go under the radar if you win football matches but doesn’t from my perspective.

“Trafford, whoever next, they’re all tough games at this stage of the season and you can see from the celebrations from Runcorn, getting a point we’re there to be shot and we’ve got to deal with that pressure. “

[Featured image: Karl Dunkerley]

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