half-time huddle did the trick

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Arbroath forced an unlikely win on Saturday as Berwick were made to rue a hatful of missed opportunities as they slipped to an opening day defeat despite leading at half-time.

Although a promising outcome for the first match of the SPFL League Two season, the Lichties’ tough new boss Allan Moore was not overjoyed with the result.

He explained: “I am pleased with the second half performance but I am concerned with the play in the second half.

“It’s poor by anyone’s standards to lose a goal after just six minutes.”

A series of foolish errors and missed opportunities resulted in a shaky start to the Maroons’ game not least of all a poor clearance from ‘keeper David Crawford.

Rangers’ Paul Willis netted an easy goal after Crawford’s misplaced punt.

Asked how he was going work on stopping the concession of early goals Moore joked: “We’ll start with not passing to the other team!”

“In general we need to work on keeping the ball and using it effectively.

“We have got to stop losing early goals.

“The best game plan for future matches is to get a grip of these faults and turn them around.

“If we can switch it around, take possession and control early and get a goal early on we can get ahead.

“Heads began to drop and we really needed to regroup at half-time and inject that fighting spirit back into the team.”

The Lichties emerged far hungrier in the second period leaving Rangers trailing behind.

Bobby Linn’s saved attempt was returned by Buchan to level the score. Berwick could have regained the pace but gaffer Moore thinks the half-time turn around saved the match: “There were good plays in the second half, we played really good football and that definitely kept us in the game.”

Waning morale could be a problem but the boss is encouraged by the team’s ability to pick themselves up and deliver the results needed to chalk up wins on the board.

“They’ve got perseverance in abundance and most of the teams we have played pre season have been above us in ability and we’ve handled ourselves not too badly at all,” said Moore.

A trait they will need for Saturday’s clash against Albion Rovers. With a number of players having rubbed shoulders in the past the boss thinks there will be a fair amount of emotion running through the home game.

“I think there might be a wee bit of a grudge match there.

“What we really need is to get the home fans out to Gayfield and behind us.”