PAUL Hurst believes Town played better than they have in recent weeks despite going down 3-0 to Hartlepool at Blundell Park on Saturday afternoon, but said that goals change games.
Speaking in his post-match press conference after the game, the Mariners boss said: ''You're not happy because you've lost 3-0 in a game at home, though I have to say I don't think it was a 3-0 game realistically.
''But at the same time, I do think we've played against a good side today and once they got 3-0 ahead in particular, it becomes difficult.
''It's hard to keep that motivation and willingness to do everything correctly and they're looking to hit you on the break to get a fourth but I have to say and this is where I've said to the players before, I'll give an honest assessment of what I see and I thought we played better today than we have done in the previous three games.
''But goals change games and theirs did that, initially in the first half they went in their favour and then when we're trying to get back in the game, the keeper's made two absolutely outstanding saves to stop us from getting that goal that might have made them a bit nervous.''
Winger Tom Bolarinwa was one of the star performers for Town on the day, and though Hurst agreed with his, he said that the club are working on his fitness, stating: '' He played well for a period of time and then he blew up because Tom in my view isn't fit enough to play for 90 minutes and that's something we're gonna have to try and work with him on.
''But there's no doubt he was positive in his play and with his style, he gets the crowd up and gets them on the edge of their seats and he's hard to mark so this isn't a dig at Tom at all but he will either end up being used as an impact substitute or getting brought off in games when you'd still like to leave him on.
''We've gotta try and get him fitter so he can be a threat for longer and longer in games.''
Ex-striker Padraig Amond scored two of Hartlepool's goals on the day, starting the game alongside another ex-Mariner and speaking about the two after being asked if Amond being the goalscorer made things worse at all, the Town boss said: ''No, not really on that side, what I would say is I said at the time and said in the programme beforehand that I would've liked to have kept the two players that played for Hartlepool today.
''Now, there are obvious reasons we haven't been able to hold onto them so that can be a frustration more than anything.
''It's alright saying stop Amond because he's a goalscorer but we know a few Conference teams that would've been having the same conversation last season and few managed to do that, so he got his goals and as I said, there's no hard feelings.
''At the other end of the pitch, I thought Toto showed exactly what I think of him. He played with a composure, he played and read the game extremely well and showed what a very, very good defender he is.
''So the people that were maybe shouting silly abuse at him, that's kind of jealousy and not the right way to treat someone that was outstanding for us.''
In another talking point, Ashley Chambers suffered a nasty gash to his leg in the game that forced him off early on, and although Hurst is unable to give a time frame on his return as of yet, he doesn't believe there was any particular malice in the tackle that caused the injury.
Asked if he looks like he'll be out for long, the Town boss said: ''No idea, he's gone to hospital to have stitches and I think it's high up on his thigh.
''I know some people weren't happy with the challenge, that wasn't my initial reaction, it looked like two players high on the ball and it looked nasty but I'm not sure how much intent there is.
''If that happened the other way around, I certainly wouldn't expect my left back to be sent off so again, no qualms on that, I just hope that Ashley can be back as soon as possible.''
Watch Hurst's full post-match press conference below.