Forth Wanderers manager Jamie McKenzie has revealed that he was far from happy with his players despite them winning 2-1 at Lochore Welfare to qualify for the fourth round of the Scottish Junior Cup for the first time in 14 years.
Wanderers seemed to be on easy street in their final match of 2017 on December 23, going 2-0 ahead after the Crosshill hosts were severely handicapped by having to put an outfield player in goal after an accidental collision between their goalkeeper and a defender.
But the Kingshill Park men were disappointing in the second period and conceded a goal before nervously booking their passage into the next stage.
“In terms of the game we were very, very poor,” said gaffer Jamie.
“I’m pleased we got through but a lot of things disappointed me about the way we played.
“That might sound silly as we got through, but I told the players in the dressing room afterwards that I had set them high standards which they didn’t reach.
“I told them that we were way, way below those standards against Lochore.
“The only positive was that we still won despite not playing well.
“The weather conditions were horrendous though, with an absolute gale blowing.”
Despite the treacherous conditions, Forth established their 2-0 half-time lead in Fife thanks to goals by Warren Grenfell and Barry McGeechan.
“We got away with it in the first half,” Jamie said.
“I thought we would go out in the second half, with the wind at our backs, and cut them open.
“But we didn’t get anywhere near that and – although Lochore’s goal looked offside – it was given and we ended up hanging on at the end.
“Without showing disrespect to Lochore, we should have scored five or six against them.
“I had a real good chat with our players after the game. We were in the dressing room for half an hour.
“I had a real go at them and demanded they do better in the next game.”
Jamie has spent the 10 days since the Lochore match contemplating on why his team were so poor in the tie and trying to put them right ahead of their resumption to Central Division 1 duty in a trip to Blantyre this Saturday.
Wanderers could be doing with a victory as they are currently second bottom with just six points from seven games.
* Forth’s fourth round Scottish Cup opponents remain unconfirmed as Wishaw’s third round replay against Dundee Downfield on Saturday was postponed.