Noble’s left with a familiar feeling
CHELTENHAM midfielder David Noble was left with a sense of déjà vu after throwing away a lead that means they travel to Mansfield tomorrow with work still to do to stave off the threat of relegation.
The Robins took the lead through Jamie Cureton’s goal just after the half-hour mark but any hopes of finally putting their relegation fears to bed soon evaporated.
Fleetwood hit back in the second half through an Antoni Sarcevic penalty and Josh Morris’ first goal for the club to secure a play-off berth at least in their second season of League football.
And while the Cod Army kept themselves in the hunt for an automatic promotion place, Noble admits the sooner his side can consign their season to history the better.
“We have thrown away 34 points, which is ridiculous really,” Noble said.“We know it’s happening, but we can’t stop it.It’s very frustrating and if we had half of those points we’d be comfortably in the play-offs.
“I am sure it’s something the gaffer (Mark Yates) will be looking to put right next season.
“It’s down to concentration levels and it’s all in the mind. The dressing room was a sombre place afterwards, very quiet and somehow we have to pick ourselves up and go again at Mansfield.”
Cheltenham took the lead through Cureton’s 32nd-minute strike after Chris Maxwell had parried Harry Williams’ shot.
But an improvement after the break saw Fleetwood level from the spot through Sarcevic after Matt Richards fouled Iain Hume in the 55th minute.
And Morris won it with a clinical finish after David Ball’s pass nine minutes later.
Chris Maxwell kept Cheltenham out in the second half with some fine goalkeeping, keeping out Sido Jombati’s free-kick and reaching low to his right to stop Steve Elliott’s header.
And after booking up a play-off spot, Cod Army manager Graham Alexander feels the pressure is on the teams above them as the bid to claw their way into the automatic places with three games left. “We got ourselves on the back foot with the first half showing and conceding the goal and we had to dig deep to get three points out of this game,” he said.
“The players did that and it was great to see because the second half was much-improved.
“It is all about players – players win games – and they showed the right spirit. It had to be more spirit and more tempo because we know the quality is there.We played really well in the second half. When we had to defend we stood up to it.”
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STAR MAN CHRIS MAXW