sheffield hallam v doncaster

Marcus Hooper of Doncaster goes round Sheffield Hallam keeper Simon Hujwan to slot home the opening goal of the game

Marcus Hooper of Doncaster goes round Sheffield Hallam keeper Simon Hujwan to slot home the opening goal of the game

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Sheffield Hallam men’s first XI head coach has demanded players to improve in all aspects of their game after the team suffered a 4-1 home defeat against their South Yorkshire neighbours last weekend.

The hosts had been full of confidence going into their opening outdoor game of 2015, after gaining promotion to the indoor Division One North the previous weekend.

Doncaster captain Matt Gibson shows his delight as Doncaster go 1 - 3 up v Sheffield Hallam

Doncaster captain Matt Gibson shows his delight as Doncaster go 1 - 3 up v Sheffield Hallam

Insteadm Vicky Joel watched on from the side-lines in disappointment as her side went 3-1 down by half time, conceding a further goal in the second half.

Vicky, who is also the Wales women assistant senior coach, was left frustrated by the team’s performance and said: “It wasn’t good enough.

“The players should have performed better and I wanted to see them play with more spirit considering the derby nature of the game.

“Doncaster didn’t throw anything at us that we couldn’t have handled, we just made silly mistakes and have paid for it.

Doncaster keeper stops the ball with his leg as David Goodfield of Sheffield Hallam takes a tumble

Doncaster keeper stops the ball with his leg as David Goodfield of Sheffield Hallam takes a tumble

“They are a good side and of course, they took their chances when they had them.

“I was particularly disappointed with the third goal we conceded because we could have easily prevented it and in every area on the pitch we could, and should, have played better.

“However the players are very aware and we will go over video footage to pin point exactly where we went wrong.

“It won’t be a fun week for the players but improvement is essential.”

Hallam had been favourites going into the clash, having won 5-2 in the reverse fixture in October.

But defeat leaves the Abbeydale Park side second in the Men’s Conference North on 22 points after 12 games - just ahead of Doncaster on goal difference, and ten points behind leaders Bowden.

“We have to be realistic and it does like Bowden will most likely run away with the league now,” Joel added.

“But we always knew it was going to be a tough division this year. It is a great achievement to be up there in second, though, and I don’t want the players to forget that.

“Which is why I want them to put in big performances until the very end of the season.

“We need to learn lessons from the Doncaster game and I want us finishing above them in the league – we need to end this season on a good note.”

The Sheffield side suffered a double blow on the weekend as they were also knocked out of the cup by reigning cup holders Cannock, losing 3-1 in the Now: Pensions England Hockey quarter finals.

But Joel - who face fourth-placed Loughborough Students at home tomorrow - said: “We had a brilliant run in the cup and it’s the furthest we have ever got so the players have to take the positives.

“I now want everybody to be fully focused for Loughborough and we have to take our chances in front of goal.

“We may have had two difficult results but we are strong enough to bounce back and I want to see an all-round excellent team performance tomorrow.”