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'We need to learn how to kill off teams'

By Sam Hendry

Wick Academy v Forres Mechanics, Wick Academy, Wick Academy FC, Highland League
Wick Academy v Forres Mechanics, Wick Academy, Wick Academy FC, Highland League

WICK Academy manager Tom McKenna bemoaned his side's inability to take their chances after they were held to a goalless draw by Forres Mechanics on Saturday.

After a tight first half, Academy had several clear sights of goal in the second period, but were denied by a combination of wasteful finishing and excellent goalkeeping by the Can-Cans' Stuart Knight.

The result leaves Academy 10th in the table, having failed to score in three consecutive home league fixtures for the first time since September 2005.

"In the second half we were by far the better team and we have to learn how to kill teams off," McKenna said. "We created so many chances again and it's happening too often.

"We're the better team in games but we're not punishing the opposition. This isn't gaining a point against a decent team – this is two points dropped as far as I'm concerned."

Knight made two excellent saves from Gordon MacNab while Craig Gunn and Richard Macadie also saw chances go begging as Forres hung on. "It's up to the individual to take these chances," McKenna said. "We can work on things in training, but ultimately they need to show a bit more quality out there.

"We need to be more clinical and composed in front of goal. Confidence plays a part as well, as a lot of the lads haven't scored many goals this season."

After criticising their display in the 1-0 defeat to Formartine United, McKenna saw plenty to be impressed with in the performance on Saturday.

"The effort of the lads was exactly what I asked for before the game – they were unbelievable at times," he said. "The park isn't conducive to good football, but I thought at times the boys played it about really well.

"Once again the back five were excellent and the three in midfield worked a lot better together and linked up with the defence and attack well.

"We wanted the wide players to get involved in the box and help Marc Macgregor a bit more and they did that. At training on Thursday I told them they needed to up the effort because it wasn't good enough against Formartine, and we got a good response.

"I'm disappointed with the result, like last week, but pleased with the performance and the work ethic.

"I always want to find a positive and the positive is that it's a clean sheet, which can be a rarity for us because any time we win we always seem to concede a goal. Fantastic performance, created numerous chances and got a clean sheet, so it's something to build on."

* Read the match report in this week's Caithness Courier.

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