ABERYSTWYTH Town manager Matthew Bishop says that his side must put their 4-0 home defeat to Newtown firmly behind them as they look to secure Welsh Premier League survival in their last five matches.
The hugely disappointing defeat at Park Avenue leaves them just one point ahead of second-from-bottom Rhyl, as they look to bounce back at struggling Airbus UK Broughton on Saturday.
The Seasiders will not be helped by the fact that influential skipper Luke Sherbon will be suspended for three games after being sent off last Friday.
“I’m disappointed about the performance,” said manager Bishop.
“I thought we had a great chance early on in the game. If Geoff (Kellaway) had taken that chance, it would have been a different start for us.
“But fair play they were the better team from that point on, and I’m disappointed to concede the four goals.
“The sending off absolutely killed us. I’m disappointed about that because that put us under pressure.
“He’s got a responsibility, and at the end of the day you look to the experienced players to get you back in.
“Unfortunately he’s made a mistake and is going to get punished for it.
“We’re going to lose him for three games, but that gives other people the opportunity to come into the side.
“Ironically, we were the better with 10 men, and that tells us a lot about where we are at the moment.”
Boosted by the return of striker John Owen last week, Aber travel to face an Airbus side that they have already beaten three times this season, and points are essential on Saturday.
“We’re in a scrap, we’ve got to get back to basics. We’ve got to forget this one today,” commented Bishop.
“We can’t dwell on it, we’ve got five big games to go and if we go to Airbus and get a result, things change.
“But it’s going to go to the wire, I think. Rhyl got a point tonight, which means that they’ve closed the gap.
“We’ve to look at ourselves, and believe in what we are capable of.”
Assistant manager Wayne Jones was equally disappointed with the performance and result last Friday.
“I’m really gutted to be honest,” Jones commented after the game.
“We knew the consequences going into the game, which were obviously massive for ourselves, but once again, this was a below-par performance.
“Early doors we did not take our chances, and it has proved costly. It is happening time and time again, and it’s something that we’ve addressed.”
He added: “The problem we’ve had for the last couple of weeks is that, for a number of reasons, we’ve not had the full squad training together.
“That’s been addressed, and we’ve now got a fully fit squad available.
“We’ll be training on Wednesday, and our preparation has got to be right on the money. And if we acquit ourselves well, there is no reason why we cannot get a result up there.”
Meanwhile Jones admitted that staying out of the bottom-two is now the clear priority for the Seasiders.
“We were talking three weeks ago about looking at seventh spot, but to face facts our objective is 10th or above, because we don’t want to be in that bottom two,” he commented.
“We’re a point away from it now, it’s all to play for, and we’ll go again.”
Aberystwyth Town Ladies at least had reason to celebrate as they eased to a convincing 6-0 win over Aberystwyth University in the first leg of their Central Wales Cup semi-final.
Ffion Wyn, Ffiona Evans, Tania Wylde, Sophie Cook, Sian Meleri Evans and Josie Pugh scored goals for the Welsh Premier League club.
Aberystwyth Town’s Under-19s meanwhile won 3-2 at Risca United in the Welsh Premier Development League Southern Section, with goals from Tega Emeseh, Sion Ewart and Tomos Evans securing their points.
On Sunday afternoon, they will play hosts to Cardiff Metropolitan University at Park Avenue (ko 2pm).