Sheerin: I’m sick of saying we will get better, maybe we can’t

Falkirk head coach Paul Sheerin gave a damning assessment of his side's display as they crashed out of the Scottish Cup to Raith Rovers after a 2-1 defeat.

Saturday, 27th November 2021, 9:58 pm
Head coach Paul Sheerin on the touchline (Pics Michael Gillen)

Despite ex-Bairn Reghan Tumilty being sent off for a second bookable offence just before the half hour mark, the visitors led through Ross Matthews low drive at the break.

Talisman Callumn Morrison netted a superb equaliser but the hosts failed to capitalise on the man advantage and Ethan Ross’ late winner sent Raith Rovers through to the fourth round.

Sheerin admitted the Bairns ‘blew it’ and should have at the very least taken the game to a replay at Stark’s Park.

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Callumn Morrison scored the equaliser

“I thought they started the game brilliantly and gave us a spook, but we rallied and found a foothold in the game. Callumn Morrison has a great chance that goes off the post and it then was end to end. It was a real cup tie. The sending off changed the game and from that point on it was our game to win.

“To concede when they are just down a man wasn't good enough.” admitted Sheerin.

The 47-year-old made clear at half time the key to winning was patience, and he was angry that the players rushed too often looking for the all-important goal.

“I preached patience at the break and we went out and got a goal even quicker than I had hoped for. I still wanted more patience after that as we had time but we didn’t show enough of it. We forced things too often and didn’t do enough to work the goalkeeper.

Both bosses at the start of the game

“We had a lot of possession but failed to make it count and they got a goal at the end because we can’t keep it tight enough at the back. I’m sick of standing here saying we will continue to get better, maybe we can’t. We need to show more pride in keeping the ball out of our net.”

Ryan Williamson started for the first time since returning from injury but went off in the second half for Gary Miller, and Sheerin confirmed it was a planned substitution and not a new concern for the right back. He said: “It was always going to happen with his fitness not being right up to speed yet. He’s not played enough to last 90 minutes. He was having a great game as well and helped create the goal - which was well worked and made from patience.”

Sheerin admitted he wouldn’t be able to take any positives from the match at all.

“It’s a cup tie and if you don’t go through then it counts for nothing. The big regret is you can’t get it back and we are out now when we were given a real chance.“We are struggling to get ourselves going and we have big matches coming up and unless we shut up shop at the back and find a way to score more often, we won’t get the results we need.”

Ethan Ross' late winner