SKELMERSDALE UNITED manager Tommy Lawson was keen to put their season into perspective after the defeat to Burscough - but still labelled their performance as “unacceptable”.
Skem fell to a first league loss of the season on Tuesday night as the Greens capitalised on what Lawson says was a display out of character from his players.
United have so far enjoyed a wonderful campaign which has included their long unbeaten run in the Evo-Stik First Division North and many memorable FA Trophy ties.
But Lawson refused to hide his disappointment with the 4-1 loss in midweek and questioned many of his players’ attitude to the game.
The Skem boss has now challenged his players to respond with a much improved performance at Curzon Ashton this weekend.
“Hunger, desire and quality were all missing from the performance on Tuesday night,” he said.
“Collectively and individually we had a bad day.
“What this group of players have achieved this season is unprecedented at Skem and rightly they have taken all of the plaudits.
“And at the start of the season would I have accepted just one defeat and two draws by the start of February? Of course I would.
“But on Tuesday night only one or two players achieved the standards they are capable of and the rest of the team were poor.
“When we play these teams we have got to match their enthusiasm and have a work ethic before the quality can come through.
“We have not got to where we are this season by just turning up.”
On Saturday, Skem travel to play-off chasing Curzon with Lawson expecting a reaction.
“There’s got to be a response and hopefully a positive one on Saturday,” he said.
“This is the time of the season where the muck and bullets will be flying at us and now our season starts.”Curzon Ashton v Skelmersdale United, Saturday, 3pm.