Southport boss Liam Watson has conceded that his side have to strengthen their attacking positions this summer after their dismal run in the second half of the season.
Port’s positive season has fizzled out after their torrid run and it sees them winless since the end of February.
As a result, their playoff hopes have come crashing down leaving them resigned to finishing in mid-table and leaving a “sour” taste.
The Bank Holiday brought one point out of a possible six after their draw against Telford. Prior to that, their mini-fightback was thwarted by Gateshead – who raced into a two-goal lead before Jordan Archer pulled one back in a 3-1 defeat.
“Gateshead are the level where we look at and say that’s the benchmark if you want to get out of the league, you’ve got to be there,” Watson told Off The Park. “If you look at the amount of goals they’ve scored, the amount of points they’ve pulled in we’re some way off that. They know there’s got to be a big improvement.
“Most of the games we’ve give ourselves an opportunity where we can capitalise and we haven’t because there’s only been Jordan (Archer) who’s been a regular scorer.
“It’s the creativity side, we need to create and we need to score, that end of the pitch is what needs to be paramount in the summer.
“Probably a little bit despondent but when you’re despondent sometimes you’ve got to tell them a few hard truths, no point moping around it’s only them who can put it right (on the pitch), not me.
“They’re well thought of players, good lads, they’ve had a go, they look as if they’re tired which whether it’s confidence, age, injuries, ultimately it’s whether they haven’t been good enough to sustain the level.
“The idea of the season what was set out was let’s try be competitive for the playoffs and I think we can say we did that, we have fell short but we did that. To win a trophy, we done that. Can we develop players to sell them into the Football League? Because that’s the way we operate as a football club and we’ve done that, we’ve ticked a lot of boxes. But the run at the backend makes it feel a little bit sour.”