Lack of composure in front of goal costs Rovers again

POSSESSION BATTLE: Haverhills Ben Bradley (left) tries to win back the ball high up the pitch

POSSESSION BATTLE: Haverhills Ben Bradley (left) tries to win back the ball high up the pitch

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THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE

PREMIER DIVISION

Haverhill Rovers 0

Felixstowe & Walton United 3

Haverhill Rovers boss Ben Cowling has conceded his side must start converting their chances after Saturday’s loss at home to Felixstowe drew them closer towards the bottom three.

The shut out against promotion-hunting Felixstowe marked a third game in a row that Rovers have failed to find the net, while they have only scored three goals in the last 540 minutes of football.

Performances remain at a competitive standard, but with Rovers now just three points above the relegation zone, Cowling is eager to see more composure in the final third.

“The Felixstowe manager admitted afterwards there was not three goals between the teams, but that does not matter — they won the game,” said the Rovers chief.

“It is worrying because as good as our general play is, the opposition are scoring and we are not.

“The positive is that chances are being created, but we must start taking them because we need to get a couple of wins on the board quickly.”

Felixstowe took the lead at The New Croft in the 22nd minute when a Stuart Ainsley free-kick on the left was met by the head of Rhys Barber, who glanced the ball into the bottom right corner.

Their tally was duly doubled only eight minutes later courtesy of Craig Jennings.

Rovers goalkeeper Charlie Turner failed to deal with Callum Bennett’s cross into the penalty area, leaving Jennings with a routine finish to carry on the form he showed at Newmarket Town on Tuesday night, when he scored a hat-trick.

That was followed by a period of pressure from Rovers, with off-balance captain Luke Haines shooting wide and experienced midfielder Marc Abbott seeing his effort cannon to safety off the post.

However, just as they had been in the first half, Felixstowe were more clinical after the restart and claimed their third goal in the 64th minute.

It came from another cross, with Ainsley’s centre being turned in by Daniel Davis at the near post.

“We have been undone by three set-pieces, which is really disappointing,” added Cowling.

“That has been our Achilles heel for much of the season unfortunately.

“A lot of the time it comes down to concentration levels, which need to improve.”

Rovers: Turner, Boddey, Gardner, Milne, Hunt, Geoghegan, Weaver (Jebb 73), Abbott, Longley (Newman 73), Haines (Leavers 73), Bradley

Subs not used: Holmes