Manager Nathan Haslam felt that Whitley were comfortably the better side in the 1-1 draw against Thornaby on Saturday but failed to make the most of their chances.  “It was a dominant performance but the result didn’t show what the performance warranted. But if you don’t shoot you won’t score.
“I thought Thornaby scored their goal totally against the run of play, it was their only chance of the half and they were clinical. It was poor defending by us in terms of following runners in the box, but I think it was a game we dominated in general. Marcus Giles took his goal remarkably well; he also brought a great save from the keeper after about 10 minutes. Luke Salmon in the first half went one on one with the keeper, but took a poor first touch and really should have done a lot better than he did. But based on chances and in terms of possession in the first half, we were the better team.
“The message at half time was to improve on what we’d done. My thought process was that if we’re going off the Consett game, the lads had another 15 – 20% in them, and I think to a point they gave me that. We dominated the second half, constantly probing forward but for whatever reason we weren’t pulling the trigger. We were trying to walk it in the net. The key moment for me was when Connor Smith just had to stroke it into an empty net and for some reason he elected not to use his left foot. Eventually it did get to Craig McFarlane, probably three or four yards out and he’s hit the crossbar. I think that was the determining point in the game because if we’d scored that chance I do think we’d have gone on to win the game by a number of goals.
“But as it was, it kept Thornaby in the game. It gave them something to fight for. They defended for their lives and they did it quite well in the end. But we should have won the game. We were in total control and we’ve had the opportunities to win the game, not just half chances, cast iron goal chances and for some reason we just haven’t put them away. Ideally we needed to win that game, but we didn’t lose, so that’s a positive; and their manager after the game has said what an absolutely cracking team we’ve got, far better than our league position would suggest.
“The two players who stood out for me were Callum Anderson who went in at centre half because of the absence of Scott Lowery who was away; and Marcus Giles, an 18 year old who took his goal exceptionally well, absolutely brilliantly.”
We’ve now got an important game against Whickham coming up at the weekend and we’ll be preparing for that this week.”