POOL’S players have been told in no uncertain terms that the display at Peterborough wasn’t good enough.
Boss Ian Holloway, already wound up by off-the-field matters, was in no mood to make excuses after the 3-1 defeat at London Road.
Against a Peterborough side that had won only once since December, Holloway’s men were always second-best and the scoreline could have been worse but for some fine saves by Matt Gilks.
Holloway said: “It was a horrible afternoon and absolute garbage all round from start to finish, I’m afraid – from LuaLua missing a kick (in front of goal in the early stages), to my back four forgetting to defend, down to probably getting outworked by a team fighting for their lives.
“I would have liked to see my team fight for their future but unfortunately their team did it better. We were beaten by a better team on the day, so we have to sort our lives out.”
Peterborough took the lead through a Tyrone Barnett header, adding a second before the break when an unmarked Paul Taylor slotted in.
That goal actually came from a Blackpool free-kick but the Tangerines were caught on the break.
Substitute Nouha Dicko pulled one back ten minutes from the end – the on-loan Wigan man’s second goal for the club – but Posh wrapped up victory late on thanks to a George Boyd strike.
Holloway added: “We have conceded again from a set-piece for the first goal. The lad (Barnett) has outjumped my biggest centre- half and tallest bloke (Ian Evatt). “Before the second goal, we had a free-kick and why we decided to take it like we did –ill-planned and not right behind it – I do not know.
“Then I thought I saw one or two people blaming Lua for not crossing it and giving it away, when we left Alex Baptiste back on his own. Stephen Crainey should have been back with him from that set-piece.
“But listen, I don’t blame any individual – I never have and I never will. That was an appalling team effort. We looked like we wanted to let them play when they had the ball and that isn’t nice.
“What annoyed me most is the way we didn’t work back like we said we would. We discussed and practised it but we didn’t do it.
“We managed to nick a goal back and we should have gone on from there. We needed to attack with a bit of verve and for that goal we did. I have some great forwards and one of them (Dicko) nicked a goal.
“I expected us then to go on like we have done recently, but we didn’t and instead we let another goal in, which just summed up how the day went.”
With ten games of their season remaining, Pool are now in eighth place, ten points off the top two but only a single point outside the play-offs.
However, rivals Middlesbrough, Cardiff, Birmingham and Hull all have a match or two in hand.