Weston AFC could be forgiven for feeling sorry for themselves after their 2-1 loss to Aveley FC on Saturday, but manager Scott Bartlett didn’t see it that way.

A penalty in the 80th minute for Aveley was the deciding factor in the game despite The Seagulls producing more chances, a result many would come away from the feeling hard done by, but Bartlett was realistic in reflection and wanted to focus on his teams good performance rather than dwell on the loss of points.

He said: “Over the course of the season there’s lots of games that can go either way with not much between the two times because we’re at a good level.

“If we’d have won the game they might have been a bit aggrieved that they hadn’t got something from it, so it’s the same both ways.

“I was fine with our performance, I thought it was acceptable, and at the end we thought we could maybe go on and win it but it wasn’t to be today and there’s lots of games like that this season, we’ve also won games where maybe a draw could’ve been a fair result.

“It was only a circumstantial penalty at the end that decided it so I think as a manager you have to be aware of that and aware of what we’re asking of our players putting them through in this tough schedule, so I’m not displeased with the performance.

Weston Mercury: Striker Marlon Jackson came on for the injured Reuben Reid after 10 minutes.Striker Marlon Jackson came on for the injured Reuben Reid after 10 minutes. (Image: Ade Threasher/WsMAFC)

“Obviously the winner in you always wants to win, or if you can’t win get the draw, so we’ll be looking to bounce back and do that Tuesday.”

The Seagulls also suffered injuries to regular starters Reuben Reid and Callum Wood during the game, probably due to fatigue at the end of a long season for Weston, and changes would have been expected for the game against Aveley as well as for their upcoming fixture against Eastbourne Borough.

Bartlett explained the personnel situation: “I didn’t make many changes to the team accept for a couple due to minor injuries.

“After Tuesday I thought I was going to rotate quite a lot today, that was my intention, but then things happen and we had some enforced changes so I didn’t want to change it too much more.

“I also feel like the lads that played today deserved to play and that’s important, I though the lads played well against Chippenham and deserved to stay in the team.

“We know we’re going to have to make some changes and I’m fine with that because we’ve got good players, but we felt with changes that we know we’ll need to make further down the line this week we thought it would be daft to disrupt it before we need to.”

It’s now the start of a busy week of fixtures to end the season for Weston as they play three games in five days.

The Seagulls take on Eastbourne on Tuesday night in their last game at The Optima Stadium for the season, kick off 7:45pm, and then away games at Taunton on Thursday and Worthing on Saturday will see out their 2023/24 campaign.