After losing our unbeaten league record at Stourbridge on Saturday, we needed a reaction against Ashton United on Tuesday night.
The response that we got from the players was perfect. If we had scripted it, they couldn’t have executed it much better.
The first 45 minutes were exceptional, and although Ashton came back into it after half-time, we were good value for the three points.
We could, and probably should, have been three or four goals to the good at the interval and out of sight.
As it was, we had a 2-0 lead and were able to manage the game in the second half to ensure that we got the win.
There were a lot of strong performances on the night, but Dale Hopson really stood out for us in the first period.
It was as good as I’ve seen him play. He showed outstanding quality and helped create a cutting edge.
It was just an impressive display, and quite the opposite of Saturday where we lost the game because, quite simply, we did not play well enough.
The pitch was horrendous, there was a swirling wind and the referee made a number of unbelievable decisions, but the main problem was that we did not perform.
There was some complacency, we didn’t do the basics right and we didn’t find a good tempo.
That defeat will have taught us a valuable lesson that if we don’t turn up and produce on the pitch then we will get beaten.
That will be the case this Saturday when we entertain Sutton Coldfield. They are down near the bottom of the league, but if we think that we can just turn up and beat them, then we will come unstuck.
I feel that we owe them one from the first game of the season when we totally outplayed them but only ended up with a draw after they hit us with a late sucker punch.
I expect us to put that right this weekend.