DAN Hart did not mince his words following Buckland Athletic’s 4-2 defeat to Torpoint Athletic on Tuesday night.

The Buckland Head Coach was left frustrated by a second poor showing in the Western League in the space of four days. Torpoint striker Ryan Richards (4) lit up Homers Heath with a phenomenal display that was answered only by goals from Jared Lewington and Sam Morcom.

'For us tonight, to concede four goals again and to show that soft belly produce that many individual errors really hurts,’ Hart said. 

'As a coach, we pride ourselves on providing the team with structure and we’ve had a start to the season – and pre-season – where we are making far too many errors on the pitch and the players are letting themselves down as a group as it stands. 

Buckland 2-4 Torpoint
Bucks boss Dan Hart, right, stands alongside Danny Lewis in front of the dugout. (Toejam237)

'For me, the only blessing is that we are very early into the start of the season, only two games in and a cup game to come but we need to shake individual errors out of our game. 

'We brought quality players into the club, and they’re players who have a strong and firm belief in their own abilities and the abilities of those around them, and they need to start showing that by producing quality moments on the pitch and reducing the amount of opportunities we give the opposition to score goals.’

Richards made the breakthrough on the midpoint of the first half when he was set in behind by a beautifully-weighted lofted pass which he gathered neatly before firing a skidding effort underneath Bucks goalkeeper Andy Collings.

Buckland were given a chance to draw level from the penalty spot 10 minutes later but, perhaps in keeping with a start in which nothing seems to be going as planned, Owen Stockton’s drilled penalty was saved well by Jordan Duffey.

Buckland 2-4 Torpoint
Owen Stockton's penalty was saved brilliantly. (Toejam237)

The hosts were made to pay shortly before half-time. Richards found space a long way from goal and spotted Collings straying off his line, taking advantage of it with a clever effort which sailed into the top corner.

'I’m a firm believer that team principles are far more important than any shape or structure that a team presents,’ said Hart, who has stuck to a back three throughout pre-season and into the beginning of the league campaign with limited success. 

'I think we have the players that suit a back three and I also think that throughout the season there will be times where we play with a back four. I consider myself to be someone who’s pragmatic in the way we operate and we will get the best out of the players we have. 

'At the minute we are playing a back three on paper and the reason we are conceding goals and losing games has nothing to do with our shape and structure, more players not committing to the principles of our team and making individual errors galore.’

Buckland were awarded a second penalty after the break as substitute Morcom forced a handball in the box. This time, Lewington stepped up and blasted home to halve the arrears.

The Bucks, with their tails up, found the equaliser five minutes later. Callum Watson whipped a spellbinding cross in to Morcom, who snuck in at the back post and headed home.

Buckland 2-4 Torpoint
Sam Morcom, second from right, nods home the equaliser. (Toejam237)

Feeling his side had turned a corner, Hart said: 'The whole momentum swung, and that’s what is equally disappointing. The game was there for the taking. 

'As a management team we were firm in the fact that we needed to play still with caution because they have such an important talisman. But we didn’t do that, and we made errors that let them in to score goals and we didn’t capitalise on the chances we created in the latter part of the game to put it away. 

'At 2-2 the game was ours, and we started to look like a real menace to them, so it was disappointing to go backwards.’

But Buckland hearts were broken just minutes later. As Torpoint broke past the defence, Teigan Rosenquest brought the ball-carrier to the ground and gave referee Dillon Gascoigne no option but to award a penalty. Richards duly dispatched the spot-kick.

The insurance goal came in added time. Collings ventured out towards the halfway line in the hope of creating one final chance for Buckland but his pass struck Stockton and fell for Richards, who side-footed the ball into the vacant net. 

'We’ll take some learning from tonight,’ Hart said. 'It’s important that we do that.’ 

Buckland 2-4 Torpoint
Torpoint's Jordan Duffey, right, and Jordan Rundle exchange a victorious high-five. (Toejam237)

The two sides meet again at Homers Heath on Saturday, August 5, in the FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round.

'I like the challenge of playing a team twice in a matter of days,’ Hart explained. 

'Tactically I find it fascinating but most importantly for us is getting back to the core principles of our game, making sure we attack the box and being a little bit more brave in possession and making things happen. 

'That’s what we will be encouraging on Saturday, rather than completely changing the way that we operate.'