Walsham-le-Willows joint-boss Ian Hubbard believes side deserved more from Tilbury defeat in FA Vase
Walsham-le-Willows joint boss Ian Hubbard stated he is ‘really proud’ but felt his side ‘deserved something’ from their 1-0 defeat at home to Tilbury, which saw the hosts bow out of the Isuzu FA Vase at the fourth-round stage.
The Willows’ history-making run in the competition has increased attendances at the Morrish Stadium and allowed the club to dream, but Jack McQueen’s goal in first half stoppage time put an end to their road to Wembley.
The winning strike gave the visitors a deserved lead at the end of a scrappy and heated first half, which saw the referee brandish four yellow cards in the space of nine minutes.
Having struggled to create clear-cut chances in the first half, Walsham battled well in the second and on another day could have found an all-important equalising goal, Jack Brame came closest for the hosts as his volley from point-blank range was blocked by his own player – Ethan Garcia.
“We’re really proud, we can’t knock the boys. They’re gutted in there but Chay (Budd) and I just clapped them all off the pitch, shook their hands in the changing room because they have done brilliantly well,” said Hubbard.
“They deserved everything. They deserved to get this far in the competition but unfortunately we’ve gone out now. That’s cup football but I’m really proud of the boys.
“We’re obviously really disappointed. Second half, we had a real go and on the day it just didn’t fall for us.
“I tell you what, they were praying for that whistle. They were kicking the ball in the corner, they were going down, they were just playing the game and you’ve got to give credit to them – they did that well.
“They’re gutted. They’re gutted because we had a fantastic run and we just didn’t get the rub of the green today. On another day, we could have nicked a goal, it was that tight of a game.
“The boys have done well and we now just want to kick on in the league and show we’re a better side than our league position.
Hubbard stated he was unhappy with some of the decisions from the referee and fourth official, as he said: “We’re just so disappointed with the amount of stoppage time. I reckon there should have been 15 minutes of stoppage time, he played seven in the end. But credit to them, they’ve come here, nicked a goal and hung onto it.
“I felt the occasion is difficult and I know it’s easy to moan about officials and stuff, but I think sometimes there were situations where he’s just got to get the play going on a bit more. So we’re a bit frustrated with that.
“I thought we were by the better side in the second half and we just said to the boys ‘it’s football, they’ve nicked a goal and probably shaded it’. I felt we had a real go and deserved something out of the game, I really did.
“I don’t know how many yellow cards he gave out, he was dishing them out like sweets in a sweet shop.
“We’ve had a good run and we’ve lost to a side that haven’t lost in the league since August. We’ve done alright and we’re not going to beat ourselves up over that. It’s a great performance and in cup football, you only get one winner.
The Willows joint-boss stressed that he is proud to see his side ‘competing’ with any of the teams that they come up against, whether that be the Essex Senior League Premier Division leaders in the Vase or sides at the top end of the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division table.