Middlewich Town 0-0 Newton Athletic

Newton win 5-4 on penalties

ROSS Speight has told Middlewich Town’s players that an early exit from the Cheshire FA Amateur Cup last weekend should act as an alarm call.

The Witches could not be separated from visitors Newton Athletic inside 90 minutes at Seddon Street and bowed out for a second successive season after a penalty shoot-out after captain Jamie Petrie’s effort was saved.

“It’s not good enough and things have to change if we want to be successful,” said the co-manager.

“I’m bitterly disappointed to go out in the same way [as last year] but there have been too many inconsistent performances recently because we’ve not been able to name a settled side.”

Town dominated possession and territory against their opponents from the Chester and Wirral League, but without reward.

Michael Evans and Michael Whitehead both went close before the break, prompting the visitors’ goalkeeper to make a smart save.

The pattern didn’t change in the second-half, when Middlewich again failed to make the most of the opportunities they created.

They also survived a scare or two late on when their own custodian, Charles Masters, was called upon to thwart the visitors at the end of a counter-attack.

Speight added: “I’m more upset with our performance; we were too slow in possession and didn’t ask more questions of their defence.

“Newton deserve some credit too for how well they defended, and to be fair they looked dangerous on the break late on.

“However, for me, that’s a game we ought to have won.”