Depleted Fenmen 'all over the place' in opening day loss

Wisbech Town boss Brett Whaley spoke after defeat to Coleshill Town on August 14 2021

Wisbech Town boss Brett Whaley said his team were "all over the place" after his side's 4-0 opening day defeat to Coleshill Town. - Credit: Daniel Mason

Wisbech Town boss Brett Whaley admitted his depleted team were “all over the place” in their opening game of the new season. 

Whaley fielded a weakened team due to player absences, and paid for costly errors as they were blown away 4-0 by Coleshill Town in the Northern Premier League Division One Midlands. 

Saturday’s defeat at the newly-named Fountain Fresh Park was the first in eight games after the Fenmen went unbeaten throughout pre-season. 

“You can’t criticise individuals because they haven’t played together and we looked like a side that hadn’t played together,” Whaley said. 

“We looked like we did last year and we haven’t looked like that throughout pre-season, and that’s what hurts. 

“Every time Coleshill went forward in the first half, they looked like scoring. We were all over the place.” 

Wisbech were missing defensive trio Jon Fairweather, Jack Keeble and Ben Richards, while Avelino Vieira and Oli Williams were also out due to Covid-19. 

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Whaley drafted in young defender Ben Robson from Boston United under 19s, who made his senior debut in the game, as well as Elliot Foster and a third signing who was unavailable due to injury. 

“It’s easy to look at one end of the pitch, but we didn’t keep the ball well. It’s as if we felt sorry for ourselves, and we do as it’s been a terrible week for us,” said Whaley. 

“We have to look at Coleshill as they were first to every second ball and their number nine didn’t stop.  

“At times, it looked like we felt sorry for ourselves and they wanted it more than us.” 

It has been a tough week for Whaley whose preparations were quashed due to key player absences. 

Wisbech will look for their first points at Corby Town on Wednesday night, before entertaining Whitton United in an FA Cup preliminary round tie on Saturday. 

Some of those missing could be back in time for the cup clash, and the Fenmen boss has eyed two potential signings ahead of the weekend. 

“The week’s not been enjoyable because you can’t plan when these types of things happen,” Whaley added. 

“Five have had Covid already, and the impact of how long it takes for them to get back up to speed, it’s not as if they will go straight back in. 

“It’s okay having the ability to play football, but you need some guts because at this level, it’s unforgiving.” 

Wisbech Town: Charlie Congreve; Aaron Hart, Tom Mcleish, Layton Maddison, Liam Marshall (C), Ben Robson, Eoin McQuaid (sub Andre Williams, 46’), Sam Murphy, Dylan Edge (sub Toby Allen, 70’), Liam Adams, Danny Draper. 

Unused subs: Luke Pearson, Elliot Foster. 

Cautions: Wisbech Town – Robson, Marshall. 

Referee: Mr Lee Hartley. 

Attendance: 176. 

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