FA Cup: Ford admits United weren’t good enough on the day

Banbury United's Greg Kaziboni takes on Bath City's Ross Stearn and Anthony Straker in Saturday's Emirates FA Cup tie
Banbury United's Greg Kaziboni takes on Bath City's Ross Stearn and Anthony Straker in Saturday's Emirates FA Cup tie

Banbury United boss Mike Ford felt his side didn’t have enough quality in the final third to get back into Saturday’s Emirates FA Cup tie against Bath City.

Two first half stunners from Ross Stearn sunk the Puritans 2-0 in Saturday’s second qualifying round tie at the Banbury Plant Hire Community Stadium.

We talk constantly about keeping the ball in the final third but we don’t do it

Puritans boss Mike Ford

City dominated the first half and, despite United seeing more of the ball in the second half, they didn’t maintain possession for long enough in the final third to pose a serious threat. It was City who carved out the better chances and it took some top saves from Jack Harding to keep them out.

Ford said: “Bath are a league above us with a big budget but we felt we had a chance to win it, which shows where we are at the moment. That adds to the expectation but we didn’t impose ourselves on the tie.

“I’m not sure how much that was down to how well Bath played in the first half or that we allowed them to. The second goal came at the wrong time just before halftime but for both goals we didn’t react quick enough to close the player down.

“We had to decide how we could go out and play better in the second half. We changed things around and for 20 minutes in the second half we passed the ball better.

“We got into good areas of the pitch to create problems but then we stared giving the ball away and if you do that against good teams you are going to be in trouble. We had periods of good possession but then lost it and Bath were very quick on the break.

“We talk constantly about keeping the ball in the final third but we don’t do it. We have to be better in those areas, we didn’t spend enough time in the final third, I don’t remember us having a corner which shows we didn’t have enough pressure to force one.

“We had a bit of a go in the second half but Jack Harding has kept them out but full credit to Bath, they were better than us on the day.”