Cray Valley boss James Collins admits: We’re not good enough! We don’t have the right mentality. We’re not good enough in the big games

Monday 27th February 2017

CRAY VALLEY (Paper Mills) manager James Collins admits his players do not have the right mentality to beat the top sides in their league.

The Millers slipped down to eighth-place in the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division table over the weekend and crashed to a 5-2 home defeat to Ashford United yesterday.

Collins’ men took an early lead through Jason Thompson’s penalty, but Ashford United were level after 11 minutes through Stuart West’s half-volley.

Thompson scored a sublime free-kick on the stroke of half-time after West collected his second yellow card for a foul on winger Enoch Adjei on the edge of the box.

But despite having 10 men for the entire second half, Ashford United returned to the top of the table a point clear of Crowborough Athletic courtesy of Shaun Welford’s hat-trick and Adrian Stone (after Welford’s second penalty of the game crashed off the crossbar).

“It was just a bad second half,” admitted Collins, who lost Thompson to a red-card after 69 minutes, a case of mistaken identity because left-back Danny Smith was the one who blocked Stone's shot with his arm.

“We’re not good enough! We don’t have the right mentality. We’re not good enough in the big games.

“We’re good when things are going well and we can dig in for a bit when we have to but when the top teams and the good teams really put it on us, we’re not good enough and I’ve told the players that!

“Some players don’t like it and that’s it and they’re not going to like it because it’s the truth and I’m not going to defend them for that because it's happened too many times this season and that’s why we’re where we are in the table and as far as I’m concerned, that’s not good enough!

“Ashford are better than us and so are Crowborough and so are (third-placed) Sevenoaks.

“I’d like to think we can get into that top four but I don’t know, but they’re better than us but for me that’s not acceptable.”

Cray Valley have 11 league games left to play and are on 48 points, 16 points adrift of leaders Ashford United and four points adrift of fourth-placed side AFC Croydon Athletic.

Next up, bottom-of-the-table Fisher are the visitors on Saturday.

Dean Harrison’s side slipped to the foot of the table at the weekend after going down to a 3-0 home defeat to Bearsted, while Beckenham Town beat Lordswood by the same scoreline at Eden Park Avenue.

“They’re going to come here, that’s going to be tough, that’s not going to be easy, but we’ll have to have a look at it this week and see where we go in terms of team selection and players etc,” added Collins.

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Cray Valley (Paper Mills)  v  Fisher
Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division
Saturday 4th March 2017
Kick Off 3:00pm
at DGS Marine Stadium, Middle Park Avenue, Eltham, London SE9 5HP