NOT for the first time, John Sheridan was left to bemoan his side’s lack of finishing power as Argyle went down 1-0 to Hartlepool.Despite playing against ten men for three-quarters of the match, following the dismissal of Jack Compton, and having 21 shots and 15 corners, the Pilgrims could not find a way past Pools goalkeeper Scott Flinders.
They have scored just eight goals in their 12 Sky Bet League 2 games, one more than the division’s lowest scorers, bottom-placed Accrington.
“Do I feel we are playing well enough to win football matches?” said John, after the game. “I think we are, but we're not getting the results and we're not getting the luck. We didn't get anything today, with all the opportunities we had.
“That's just the way things are going. We have created lots of chances in the last four or five games, but it is about putting the ball in the back of the net.
"It's very frustrating. I take all the responsibilities: I'm picking the team; I brought players in. I expect us to do a lot better.
“I can't believe we are not scoring any of the chances, because we are creating so many. Especially today.”
Even without scoring, John would have expected at least a point from the encounter from the moment Compton was sent off for pole-axing Jamie Reckord.
He said: “I’m not looking for any excuses. We created lots and lots of chances and the ’keeper’s kept them in the game, but we shouldn’t concede against ten men. That’s costs us.
“We made [Hartlepool] work, and kept the ball moving, and we created really good chances. The game should have been over. When you are playing ten men, you shouldn’t lose a game 1-0. Even if you draw 0-0, you just take the point.”
They were unable to take the point because of Luke James’ fine solo effort ten minutes into the second half.
John said: “I think he's gone past three of our defenders but we made it look easy for him and it shouldn't have been.
“Then [Hartlepool] get men behind the ball and they are defending for their lives but – no excuses – it's a very, very poor result.”