Newcastle Jets coach Phil Stubbins has been left ruing a late Wellington Phoenix equaliser which denied his side just their second win of the campaign.
The Jets led 2-0 after 20 minutes, but conceded twice in the final quarter of the game, including an equaliser deep into stoppage time, to eventually draw 2-2.
“The end outcome was something that was disappointing to take”, said Stubbins.
“We’ve come here, we’ve got ourselves a two-goal lead and to come away from here with a 2-all draw is something that prior to the game, you’d probably think of as an acceptable result.
Having said that, we had a genuine opportunity to get the three points, so to have it snatched from us in the fashion that we did is obviously disappointing, but I think we also had opportunities to win the game.”
And Stubbins has also fired a shot at referee Kris Griffiths-Jones for his controlling of the game.
“There have been a lot of people jumping on the referees of late, but I think when he looks back at that he might think he could have made a few better decisions. Certainly there was nothing in there that helped us. I think the outcome was decided in a fashion that was debatable for me.”
“I don’t want to dwell on it. I just think there were some debatable decisions there. Certainly in the second half it was not advantageous to the Newcastle Jets. But the outcome is what it is and we have to learn to live with that and deal with that.”
But Stubbins has expressed his pride in his young charges, led by 22-year-old skipper Jacob Pepper.
“I’m proud that we’ve got so many young guys in there that (held) their own.”
“I think the kids that were out there will be learning a hell of a lot. For the club and platforms to be put in place and learning from those platforms, I’ve think we’ve taken another step forward in terms of education today.”
“It’s good for us to come away in the last three games with our heads held high, which we have done. We’ve had three very close games now. We’ve certainly worked hard for a win. We were very close to getting the three points but it wasn’t to be.”
The Jets host fellow strugglers Central Coast in the F3 derby on Saturday.