Conneely reacts to Chelmsley win

Joint boss Joe Conneely admitted his Hinckley AFC side “aren’t quite firing” in front of goal but he was pleased to pick up three points in a 2-1 win at Chelmsley Town.

After drawing and losing their two games in January, Hinckley picked up their first win of 2024 thanks to Brady Middleton and Tom Weale’s goals at Pack Meadow.

Conneely described the win as “hard-fought” but said Hinckley should have been further ahead had they been more clinical in front of goal.

He said: “We could have scored more but we didn’t and that meant we had to work hard.

“We’re not quite firing in front of goal recently, we can be free-flowing but haven’t quite been that in the last few. So we’ll try and find a way to get back to scoring goals.

“But it’s a big win, having not won the previous two against sides around the play-offs we just had to come and win the game. We conceded a really poor goal late in the first half and said at half-time just to find a way to win, and we did that.

“The penalty was dubious, I don’t think it is a penalty, but we’ll take it and we’re pleased to just come away with a win.”

After doing everything but score in defeat to Ingles last week, it felt like it could have been another one of those days for Hinckley. They hit the woodwork four times, missed two one-on-ones and had two goals ruled out for offside.

But Conneely felt his side defended well to see out the win at 2-1.

“Even at 2-1 with 15 minutes to go, we’re missing chances it’s easy to think something is coming at the other end!

“But we managed it well, they didn’t have a chance at 2-1 but we had to stay honest because they are lively up front. They kept us in a game where they only needed one chance but we didn’t give it to them, we defended well.

“It was frustrating in front of goal, we’re going to miss chances sometimes. They’re honest mistakes which we don’t mind but as long as we get in areas to create them, the goals will come.”

He said he was “gutted” for Ben Forrest, who slotted in well on debut alongside Ky Green but was forced off late on with a knee injury.

He also felt it was a game where AFC missed another injured player, Chandler Pegg, whose clinical finishing saw him rack up 40 goals last season and was exactly what the side have missed in the last two weeks.

“We’ve scored 83 league goals and haven’t had the player who got us 40 last year. That’s testament to the lads who we have got, even last year we didn’t just rely on Chandler but he had a massive say.

“I’m glad he’s now out doing some running and working on his injury. He was here supporting the boys which is great, because it can be a lonely place when you’re injured.

“We miss his goals definitely, as well as his assists, but the lads have been brilliant to get us into this position.”

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