North Shields manager Graham Fenton was delighted his side progressed into the semi-finals of the Techflow Group Northumberland Senior Cup with a 2-1 win over Ashington on Wednesday night.
However, the boss admitted that they were clinging on at the end. And he criticised them for not being more ruthless in front of goal.
He said: “We were brilliant in the first half. We came in one-nil up, but if we are going to getting better at what we do, we should be three, four or five up at that stage of the game.
“We were that dominant in that opening period and someone behind me said that we must have had 90 per cent possession.
“But we have got to take more chances.
“They [Ashington] went route one and got a little bit of luck towards the end where we switched off for one second, but did our keeper Chris Bannon have anything to do?
“When teams go route one we have got to get our counter attacking play better when the game is opened up.
“This usually suits us, but we didn’t get our quality right, so we are then relying on keeping a clean sheet where we should be six, seven or eight goals up with the chances we had to counter attack.
“The Ashington lads may reckon differently, but I thought we should have battered them.
“At the end we were clinging on for a 2-1 win, but it was disappointing in so many ways.”
He added: “What we have got here is a really young squad who at the moment are showing their nativities.
“Hopefully, in a little bit of time the players will start learning those things they have got to get better at, like killing the game off.
“We have got a lot of heart and ability and we speed the game up when we should be slowing it down, but we have got to learn quickly because it has cost us games already this season.”
A peach of a goal from Dean Holmes nudged the Shieldsmen in front in the opening half and after Lee Scott had levelled for the Colliers in stoppage time, Gareth Bainbridge got the winner late in extra time.
Fenton said of the opener from Holmes: “The goal was brilliant, in fact I said to the lads at half-time that if that goal had been scored in the Premiership, it would be shown time after time.”