Yeovil Town manager Mark Cooper admitted his side had enough chances to have won last night’s National League South match at Chippenham Town.

But the Glovers’ boss was in philosophical mood after seeing his side pegged back by a late own goal from defender Morgan Williams see them settle for a 1-1 draw at Hardenhuish Park.

Having gone ahead when substitute Jake Hyde headed home from close range after 77 minutes, a mistake in midfield led to a break which saw Bristol City loanee Duncan Idehen head the ball against his defensive counterpart Williams with just one minute of normal time remaining.

Speaking to BBC Somerset’s Sheridan Robins after the game, Cooper said: “We didn’t play brilliantly well, but we had too many chances not to win the game. We would normally take more than one of those but we were a bit awkward in front of goal and we didn’t make the right connection or pick the right option. Their keeper has made some really good saves and one he probably shouldn’t be given the chance to make the save, but when you get 1-0 up you have to see it out. I expect the experienced players we put on the pitch to see that out, but we make a really poor mistake and we have to take the point.

We scored the goal and then the mentality was ‘we’ve won, we’ll take a step back’, I think it was that much of a relief that we had scored a goal that they thought we’d take it and try and see it out. We were never really in any danger until we make a horrendous tackle in the middle of the pitch and Duncan (Idehen) can’t quite adjust his feet and heads it at Morgan (Williams) instead of clearing it and it is in the back of the net.

The statistics show the Glovers had 11  shots on target – with nine of them coming in the first half – with Chippenham keeper Will Henry pulling off a point blank save from Matt Worthington early in the second half and top-scorer Murphy spurning a number of opportunities.

Despite dropping points, draws for second-placed Aveley and fourth-placed Bath City at Tonbridge Angels and Hemel Hempstead Town respectively means Yeovil actually restored their nine-point advantage at the top of National League South. Third-placed Maidstone United briefly reduced the gap to eight points with a 1-0 win over Chelmsford City on Monday night.

Cooper said: “There’s loads of things for us to be disappointed about, but we have got a point tonight. No-one below us won, but no-one is going to roll over and make it easy for us, so we have to be realistic and there’s going to be some games where it’s not quite our night but we have to make sure we come out of it with something and we have done that tonight.

They defended really deep and compact but we still had numerous really good chances. In the first minute, (Rhys) Murphy has a great chance, right after half-time Worthy goes clean through. It doesn’t matter what they do, we are going to have those chances, we have just got to be more ruthless at both ends of the pitch.

It is always disappointing when you concede late on but we have had moments where we have scored that late. So we have to be realistic about it.

Cooper also said he believed Chippenham midfielder Luke Spokes should have been sent off for a lunging tackle on winger Will Dawes on the hour. Referee Shelby Elson adjudged the tackle as only worthy of a yellow card.

The Yeovil manager said: “That is horrendous tackle, it’s a red card. I don’t think the lad meant it, but he’s caught Will from his groin, down his kneecap to his shin and the referee says to me ‘it doesn’t matter where he caught him, it doesn’t mean it’s a red card.’ I’m not sure you can get any higher than that and I thought it was a really dangerous tackle. The referee has to see that is a red card, but he will be alright.”


As is the case this season, the post-match interviews include a separate chat with the manager conducted by the club’s press officer Dan Howell and here is what Mark Cooper had to say to the club’s YouTube channel.

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