Holdsworth: ‘I’m disappointed because we should have won’

Lincoln City manager, David Holdsworth has spoken out on his side’s agonising draw with Walsall in the FA Cup first round.

Lincoln City manager, David Holdsworth believes his side were unlucky not to win at the weekend against Walsall. Photo: Andrew West

After a last-gasp equaliser from the away side, Holdsworth expressed his disappointment. He said: “That’s the beauty of cup football, and certainly we must give respect to our opposition.”

The Imps held their own against their League One opponents though, and played a good game. Holdsworth explained: “The strategy we implemented seemed to work, I thought we were a strong side today, we looked good.

“We played our game; we kept the ball on the base and passed it well. The second goal eluded us if you like. The only chance they had in the second half they took.”

However, the draw meant that Lincoln added to their impressive form of late. Holdsworth commented: “That’s six games now that my boys have been unbeaten. We’re playing with confidence and we’re playing to our strengths with the players we have available. I thought it was a good contest and we’ve come out of it with some credit.”

Being two leagues above Lincoln, before the game, Walsall were the clear favourites. However, their manager didn’t seem to want to take any risks with the squad. Holdsworth said: “I don’t think Dean Smith would have underestimated us. I don’t think he was in anyway disrespectful to our players, and they set up with their strongest team available.”

The first half was a good half according to the gaffer: “We hit the crossbar, we forced Grof into a couple of good saves and we passed the ball well.

Man of the moment, and the Blue Square Premier Player of the Month for October, Jamie Taylor was at the centre of attention once again. Holdsworth praised the striker: “To go a goal up was a bonus, but what a wonderful strike. I hope he tapes it and clips it because he can look back and be very proud of it. What a wonderful goal.

“If anyone’s looking from the leagues above today, they’ll be looking at [Jamie Taylor] today and be thinking ‘I’d have a look at that’ because he performed so so well. His work rate was phenomenal and Alan power was supporting him nicely.”

Walsall equalised from a long throw, something the team seem to be dealing with behind the scenes: “The funny thing is we worked on it. Just dealing with the first ball was an issue. I don’t know whether a bit of tiredness came in, but we could have dealt with it a bit better.”

Holdsworth also senses a fantastic team atmosphere at the club. He said: “I can’t grumble with the way the boys went about it, the solidarity in the camp is fantastic.”

“[The unbeaten run] hasn’t just come from luck. We’ve worked hard. The individual errors we were making earlier in the season have been cut out it seems.”

Speaking about the result, Holdsworth admitted that he was expecting to go through to the second round proper of the FA Cup: “From an honest point of view, I’m disappointed tonight because we should have won. Likewise, I’m also realistic to know the boys are giving everything for this football club.”

Lincoln City’s next game is at home to Braintree Town on Tuesday, November 13th.

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