Vale of Lune head coach Paul Woodward has revealed there were some harsh words in the Powderhouse Lane dressing room after his side’s defeat against league leaders Wirral on Saturday.
The 24-3 reverse means the Vale have won just one of their last eight in North One West ahead of the trip to struggling Leigh on Saturday.
Woodward said: “We were expecting a tough game but I had a go at the lads afterwards because we’ve had a few missing training and being unavailable for games and everything that was said in the changing room before the game didn’t happen.
“We seemed to play against our game plan and fitness came into at the end with a couple of the lads because we made a few silly mistakes.
“It’s not like the lads aren’t showing good spirit but Wirral is the game where you need real team organisation and we haven’t always been able to work on things in training.
“We got what we deserved and it’s quite upsetting to say that but you have to face reality.”
With four games left of the season Woodward wants his side to end on a high but knows it will be no easy task despite Leigh’s lowly league position.
He said: “It’s going to be a tough game because they’re battling at the bottom of the table.
“It hasn’t been a good stamping ground for us and it’s going to be a difficult one but we’re really up for it.
“If we can get the game into the second half our fitness will hopefully come into things because I’ve heard they struggle in the second half.”
The Vale’s back division will be bolstered with James Curran and David Haigh pencilled in for returns, the former having scored a hat-trick for the second team last weekend.
Woodward said: “James was unavailable for the Kirkby Lonsdale game and then scored a hat-trick for the second team last weekend.
“I had a few people come up to me in the clubhouse on Saturday saying that I probably wished I hadn’t dropped him.
“Hindsight is a wonderful thing but the players drop themselves, if someone comes in and does well while they’re away then they might not get back in.
“I’m really pleased to get David back in too.”