While happy to snap the three-game losing streak, Paul Hurst lamented the performance of his Grimsby Town players, labelling it the “worst” display of the season so far.
The game of football works in funny ways sometimes and that has certainly been the case for the Mariners as of late, who have performed much better in other games this term and come out on the losing side.
They had to hang on for the three points against Barrow who had 24 shots on goal on the night compared to Town’s nine, with Jake Eastwood and his backline having a busy night at Blundell Park.
However, off the back of just one win in nine in all competitions and three straight league defeats, you take what you are given and the result will hopefully be a catalyst for much better things in the near future.
“That game shows what a strange business we are in,” Hurst said. “That’s the worst we have played by a long, long way and we’ve won the game.
“It looked like confidence had been sucked from the players, which I don’t get even though we have lost games. We weren’t very good tonight and I’ll always be honest. There was no real fluency, we were snatching at clearances, but we won the game even though it wasn’t a nice watch.
“I said to the players, we had to do whatever it takes to stop that losing run that we have been on, and they have done that with a valuable three points. They know we haven’t played as well as I would have liked.”
The Grimsby boss has had to go against the grain in a way in recent weeks by praising his team despite not getting the desired end result in games, and on Tuesday night he sat on almost the opposite end of the spectrum in terms of his feelings about the game.
There were plenty of nail-biting moments towards the end, but with the team managing to hold onto the win, it can hopefully be a turning point for a team that has thrown away too many points from winning positions this season.
Hurst added: “Recently, after games, I’ve been relatively happy with what I’ve seen despite the results we were getting but on this occasion, it is kind of the opposite – I’m just pleased that the players have got that victory as well as the fans.
“We want to try and marry [the performance and result] up, but that doesn’t always happen and I said to to the players recently that they’ll play a lot worse and win games and that was the case this time.
“When we missed the penalty [in the first half] you start to think whether it will be another one of those nights but we went in front soon after. We didn’t make it easy for ourselves with the goal we conceded and it wasn’t a pretty performance but the lads dug in.”
Original story at https://www.grimsbytelegraph.co.uk/sport/