Southport manager Liam Watson offers blunt assessment of ‘poor’ Marine defeat

Southport manager Liam Watson during their clash with AFC Telford United.

Southport manager Liam Watson has issued a scathing assessment of their 4-1 defeat to Marine in the Liverpool Senior Cup.

The Yellows crashed out of the competition, they won in 2019, after Louis Britton netted a hat-trick after Jordan Lussey opened the scoring with a penalty.

Tyler Walton’s goal brought them level but it proved to be shortlived after Sol Solomon handed the 22-year-old his first of the night.

Marine book their place in next month’s final where they will face Runcorn Linnets but for the Sandgrounders boss it left a lot to be desired.

“Disappointing, the best team won,” he told Off The Park. “No complaints with the scoreline, I think they wanted it more than us which is quite a damning verdict but fair play to them, they were the better team, no complaints.

“Poor all over the pitch. I just think they wanted it more all over the pitch

“It’s just incredibly poor, isn’t it? It was incredible how we got into the game anyway but it was just painting over the cracks,” he added discussing the Mariners retaking the lead within minutes of Walton’s equaliser.

Following Monday’s sobering defeat, Watson detailed the team talk but admitted that he’s had “far too many” instances of home truths.

He said: “You tell them a few home truths, I think one or two of them know they’ve got five or six games left anyway and then other things happen.

“I’ve had too many of them, the same mistakes and come up with the same excuses. We’ve got a semi-final on Wednesday then eight league games to go then a few of them might find out they might not be here.

MATCH REPORT: Marine 4-1 Southport: Britton brilliant as Mariners rule over the Port

REACTION: Neil Young lauds Marine players after ‘excellent’ Southport win

“Same people make the same mistakes, the same people do the same thing but to turn up in a derby, if you don’t want to fight and scrap for it then it tells you an awful lot of where we are.

“I’ve had to take Doyley off at half-time to protect him because he’s coming back from a hamstring [injury]. You have what you describe as favourites in the team but they’re not really favourites they’re ones you know who turn up week in, week out and three of them tonight, who turn out week in, week out, had mistakes in them – they’re probably entitled to mistakes.

“Jack Bainbridge’s workrate, Jordan Archer’s presence and when they’re not in the team, we’re nowhere near it.”

Marine moved into their first Senior Cup final since 2018, handing them their first opportunity to etch their name on the trophy since 2008.

And the Southport manager insists that he won’t forget the performance at the end of the season.

“I’ve been doing it too long, I know where we are, what we’re up to,” he continued. “Good players can win a game of football, top players can win a scrap and at the minute, are we good players? Well, we’ve won some games of football, nowhere near enough but when it came to a scrap, we weren’t there and went missing. Little flicks round the corner, stuff like that, we were nowhere near we’ve just got to win the second ball and Marine won a lot more than we did.

“It’s not a case of me picking them up, it’s a case of them picking themselves up,” Watson said ahead of their Lancashire Challenge Trophy semi-final on Wednesday. “You’ll probably get one or two who fancy turning up because it’s away at Leyland, a nice pitch but I won’t forget this performance at the end of the season.

“Pride is on the line, it’s been too easy to be injured this season that’s one thing for sure. Too easy to come back and it takes them six games to get into it. In these types of leagues, we’ve got to hit the ground running. It’s not as if they’re Premier League players, you’ve got to roll your sleeves up and have a right good go, tonight we didn’t, Marine did. They deserve to go to the final, good luck to them.”

For enquiries: