A seventh straight defeat has added to growing disappointment in the St Patrick’s Athletic dressing-room, with manager Liam Buckley keen to bring in a new striker by the close of the transfer window to try to halt their alarming form.
Buckley’s Saints had looked set to challenge for third place following a surge up the table in May, but the 3-1 defeat to Dundalk yesterday brought a further setback on a miserable run, and now even fourth place is looking difficult given an improvement from Shamrock Rovers.
The Saints boss told RTÉ Sport: "We deserved to get something out of the game. I thought we played quite well and passed it well. We had a few chances but it's just unfortunate we're giving some stupid goals away at the minute.
"We felt comfortable at half-time and spoke about how we played. We needed to keep the pressure on them. The first goal is poor play from our end of it. We gifted them an opportunity and they have gone and scored. They took a bit of momentum from that.
"We had quite a bit of play, especially in the last few minutes when we pushed on to try to get something at 2-1. We're just not having any luck at the minute. We'll just have to keep on digging in and make sure we get a result out of next game."
📣 PREMIER DIVISION TOP-SIX!@DundalkFC stretched their lead at the top of the Premier Division to four-points with a win over @stpatsfc! @derrycityfc close the gap on @ShamrockRovers with @LimerickFCie victory!— SSE Airtricity League (@SSEAirtricityLg) July 7, 2018
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After a relegation battle in 2017, and 13 losses from 25 games so far this season, questions have been raised about the position of the Pat’s boss.
He said that they cannot do anything about the past, and have to address their issues.
"I'll be straight. I know everyone in the dressing-room is very disappointed with where we are at. That said, our performances have not merited it.
"I thought we played quite well in some of the games. We've brought one or two new players into the group in the window so we'll see how that goes and push on for the rest of the season.
Delighted to have signed for @stpatsfc can’t wait to get going now— conor clifford (@conorclifford91) July 2, 2018
"Nobody likes losing. Let’s cut to the chase here. I have no doubt the dressing room is very disappointed bearing in mind we're all part of the whole thing here. It is what it is. We can't change that. Going forward we can. We have to win our next league game.
"We do [want another striker]. I’m looking. It’s not easy to do that in the window. There is not a lot of players that are available but we’re certainly looking to see what we can do."