Under 18s coach Mick Halsall was in a reflective mood after his team were on the wrong end of a 5-1 scoreline when they visited Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday.
Daniel Akindayini bagged a hat-trick for the Londoners who were just 1-0 up at the break with Wolves’ only consolation coming from Ryan Rainey in the 83rd minute to make it 3-1. Two late Spurs goals completed the rout.
Mick admitted: “When I sit down to compose the reports on our games I am always mindful of the quality of the players and team we have played against. It gives me a standard to compare to, which at times can be difficult due to the gap between us.
“Considering this I am always honest and try to be positive and realistic in my views on what we have produced in the games and what players should be doing well in order to progress through the ranks of the teams.
“We started well enough in the first twenty minutes against Spurs in as much as we were in the game although the opposition did pin us back for large periods as they bossed the possession.
“They kept coming at us both down the flanks and through the middle which made it hard for our players although they stuck to their tasks well until two of them had a lapse in concentration which allowed Tottenham to score a scrambled goal.
“Up until the goal we had numerous chances to keep the ball and work ourselves into the game but the players gave the ball away too cheaply by not to passing it simple, by turning away from obvious passes and not being good enough technically when under pressure to keep the ball.
“We could only create some half chances in the first half which finally ended with us going in a 1-0 down. I felt we could do more going forward which was mentioned in the half time team talk. However, within four minutes of the second half we had conceded another poor goal.
“This made the game even harder although we did start to get some passes in which allowed us to play some football. We went three down and immediately responded with a goal through Ryan Rainey after a pass from Ross Finney - an under 16 player who had come on as a substitute a little earlier in the half.
“We then looked more positive although the opposition seemed to relax knowing the contest was won. It was in this part of the game I started to compare and recognise the difference in quality as Spurs scored two more goals.
“Some of our players showed they do not have the mentality to stay on top of the game when it is difficult and hard. It is because they do not understand their roles and responsibilities within the team, or they do not want to do it.
“This is the main factor for me in producing players for our club when the they let them-selves down after being told and shown time and time again what they should be doing in their own positions.”