Macc men­tal­ity un­der scru­tiny

Macclesfield Express - - SEARCH - ALEX HAN­NAH

MAC­CLES­FIELD moved 18 points clear at the top of Na­tional Two North on Satur­day with a tight 15-3 win over 14th placed Broad­street, and thanks to se­cond placed Sed­g­ley Park Tiger’s loss to Caldy.

De­spite the win, coach­ing and play­ing staff alike at Mac­cles­field were left frus­trated with their per­for­mance and felt they should have done much bet­ter.

As­sis­tant coach Chris Jones felt his player’s weren’t at the races, men­tally;

“I don’t think our men­tal­ity was quite right. We were re­ally up for Sandal last week and I think we may have taken our eye off the ball this week­end.

“We had a fan­tas­tic week in train­ing, the warm up was fan­tas­tic, so I’m not to sure what hap­pened. We’ll sit down as coach­ing staff and do our re­view and see what we need to do for next week.”

Cap­tain, and try scorer Mike Finnemore ad­mit­ted it was a dis­ap­pointed squad, de­spite the win and re­sults else­where.

“We want to play at a higher level, to­day was not that level and we ex­pect to play as close to that level as pos­si­ble, week in, week out. To turn up and not play as ex­pected in good con­di­tions is dis­ap­point­ing for us.”

“We’re a frus­trated dress­ing room. Both the older and the younger lads knew that wasn’t to our stan­dards.”

The Blues make quite a few changes to their line up, in­clud­ing a first start­ing line up from last week­end’s win at Sandal, in­clud­ing a de­but man of the match per­for­mance, from Joe Palmer.

“We’ve put to­gether a squad with a lot of depth now. Joe Palmer had his first start for the club to­day and was ab­so­lutely out­stand­ing, never took a step back­wards, he was in the thick of things through­out. Billy Robin­son got his first start of the sea­son to­day, hes a very ex­pe­ri­enced player, and hasn’t played as much as he’d like but he’s been go­ing well for the se­cond team and showed to­day that he de­serves to be in­volved more of­ten”

Finnemore was also im­pressed with the per- for­mance of his young back row part­ner, and felt it was some­thing that Mac­cles­field should be proud of.

“Its al­ways good to see a young lad come through, Joe per­formed very well. He’s come on bril­liantly, and its part of what we want to do at Mac­cles­field, we want to see our own play­ers come through and play for the first team.”

The Blues are at Pri­ory Park once again this week­end and face 6th placed Har­ro­gate. When the two sides met back in Novem­ber, it was a very tight af­fair, Finnemore ex­pects the same and ex­pects his side to up their per­for­mance lev­els.

“Next week we’ll be keen to right some wrongs from to­day. Har­ro­gate was a very tough game last time out. We’re go­ing to have to make sure we pull our fin­gers out and make sure we do some dam­age.”

Chris Jones knows that top of the league Blues are now a scalp for other teams, and his side must pick them­selves up men­tally for ev­ery game.

“Next is an­other huge game at home to Har­ro­gate. We’re at the top of the league, so when teams come here, it’s their cup fi­nal, they game is raised straight away. We need to have the right men­tal­ity to make sure we match them.”

●● The Blues and op­po­nents Broad­street held a minute-long si­lence be­fore the game in hon­our of life­long club mem­ber Alan John­son, who re­cently passed away

●● Paul Millea car­ries the ball for­ward for the Blues with El­liot Mil­lar-Mills in sup­port

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