Get involved: Send pictures, video, news and views - text NEWS SHOPPER to 80360 or email us
Ebbsfleet boss claims his side should have gone through after Dartford loss
IT was the tale of two penalties at Princes Park last night with Ebbsfleet manager Steve Brown believing the wrong team crashed out of the FA Cup.
Dartford’s Elliot Bradbrook scored from the spot and Ebbsfleet’s Anthony Cook missed one as the home side went through to the first round proper with a 1-0 win.
It was Ebbsfleet’s fourth missed penalty in a row with Michael Thalassitis, Billy Bricknell and Ben May - in Saturday’s original tie - all previously failing to the find the target from the spot.
Unfortunately for Cook, his penalty miss was the first in a game the Fleet failed to win but Brown was sympathetic afterwards.
The Stonebridge Road chief said: “Nothing can prepare for taking a penalty.
“I have taken one in the play-off final and there is nothing on the planet and in your life that can make you prepare for it.
“It’s definitely the most nerve-racking thing I ever did on a football field because there is so much pressure.
“You have the cat and mouse with the keeper, you have to choose which way are you going to go, the keeper makes his movements on the line and then you pick your spot and go for it.
“But nothing can prepare you, you have just got to have the composure on the day to be brave enough to stick to your guns and stick it in the corner.”
Brown added: “You it can see from their penalty.
“We knew that the last couple of penalties Bradbrook had taken he went to the keeper’s left, so Preston Edwards had the advice before the game.
“But Bradbrook still struck it well enough to find the bottom of the net.
“We practice penalties and I swear to you now if you recreate a penalty situation and you put Alan Julian in goal, both Cook and May would score.
“But on the day when it really matters, they couldn’t come up with the goods.”
However, despite the penalty misses, Brown still felt his team played well enough across both legs of the tie to go through to face Salisbury City on Saturday week.
“We put out two sides that should have won both here today and on Saturday,” said the gaffer.
“As a manager I thought we prepared well for both games.
“We performed well in both games and I thought the boys did Ebbsfleet proud.
“Sometimes you don’t get what you deserve in football, and certainly over the course of the two games I don’t think we got what we deserved.
“I’m chocked for the club, I’m chocked for the fans and I’m chocked for the players. I really do believe the wrong side has gone through.”
There were certainly times in both the original tie and the replay where Ebbsfleet outplayed Dartford, but Brown felt the referees in both games put in a poor performance.
He explained: “I would like to see their penalty incident again because I thought it was soft.
“I thought the referee today was poor and I thought the referee at our place was poor too.
“We have had a chance to review the sending off at ours with the keeper and there is not a single Dartford player in the penalty area when the foul is committed, so there is a clear mistake there.”
Ebbsfleet now have to pick themselves up from the defeat and aim to get their league campaign back on track.
Brown’s side are at home to Concord Rangers this Saturday and he is keen to ensure they prepare for it just like any other game.
“We are still only three points off the play-offs,” said Brown.
“I’ve now got to look after my boys.
“They are dejected but we can pick them up because there is a sense of pride.
“We have a training session Thursday and then we have a really important league game this Saturday.”
Follow us on Twitter @NewsShopperSprt
Comments are closed on this article.