JON Macken refused to lambast his Radcliffe players after their six-game unbeaten run came to an end on Tuesday night.

Boro crashed out of the Lancashire FA Challenge Trophy at the hands of Lancaster City, a 2-1 defeat bringing to an end a brilliant run that saw them climb from the bottom half of the BetVictor League Premier Division table up to the play-off places.

The former Manchester City striker felt his side were not at the races on the night but credited their hosts who were well worth their victory.

“If I’m honest I thought we were poor tonight,” he said. “From start to finish we didn’t get into the game, we couldn’t get a foothold and we got dragged into a fight.

“They are very good team, they are very physical and organised and we got sucked into a fight.

“Credit to them, they deserve the win. I thought we didn’t deserve anything from the game if I’m honest.”

Despite finding a way back into the game through Elliot Rokka, Macken could not find any positives in his side’s performance at the Giant Axe but, having seen first-hand their efforts in recent weeks, refused to condemn them completely, insisting they will be looking to return to winning ways when they travel to Stafford Rangers this weekend.

“I don’t think there were any positives to take,” he added. “We got beat by the better team today, I don’t think we can take much from it.

“We didn’t get it down, we didn’t pass the ball, we didn’t make any chances. We huffed and puffed a little bit but they had 10 men for long periods of the game and we still couldn’t break them down and that is disappointing because we have played some really good stuff and created chances – tonight we just didn’t.

“We will be working hard on Thursday and we will be playing a hell of a lot better than that. Tonight’s performance wasn’t good enough and the lads are the first to say it so we are sure we will get a reaction.

“We’ve been on a great run and they have done fantastically well over the past couple of weeks.

“The mentality that we have at this football club we want to keep pushing and we to keep pushing them.

“At the end of the day that’s what they want, they push us with the standards they show week in, week out so we are going to keep asking for it.

“Tonight we fell a bit short but Saturday we will be there.”