Danny Rowe admitted he did not have his best performance in AFC Fylde’s play-off final defeat to Salford City – but said the better team won on the day.
City beat Fylde 3-0 on Saturday at Wembley to secure a place in League Two for next season.
The striker, who netted 27 league goals and 32 in all competitions, acknowledged that the Coasters were second best on Saturday afternoon.
He said afterwards: “Everyone is down.
“We conceded an early, lucky goal.
“After that we have no complaints, we were beaten by the better team.
“It was difficult because they got the first goal which allowed them to sit in.
“Defensively they are very good. They look to counter-attack which they did.
“It was difficult. I think we started quite well without creating many chances.
“I did not have my best game myself.
“I had a few chances from distance, the quality was not the best.
“I was not particularly nervous; these are the days you want as footballers but it is not how we wanted to finish.”
Despite the defeat, Rowe maintained he and his team-mates will take something from the afternoon’s proceedings ahead of next Sunday’s FA Trophy final.
He said: “You learn from it.
“As a footballer you learn every day; as a person, player, team, you learn every day.
“We just look to improve. We all want to play at a higher level if it is with Fylde or not.
“I don’t have anything against people who want to do that.
“If you don’t want to do that, if you do not want to play higher, you are in the wrong game.
“Today was a good occasion, a great occasion and should make you better.”