Ollie Horgan said the last 20 minutes of his team’s performance in Friday night’s North West derby were a shambles.
Harps were hammered 5-0 by a rampant Derry City and it’s now four defeats on the bounce for the Donegal club.
Horgan was clearly disappointed with his team’s display when he offered his thoughts afterwards.
“The last 20 minutes were a shambles,” the Harps boss said.
“I know some people might argue the first 70 minutes weren’t good either, but we were quite comfortable in the game. I’m adamant - and I don’t normally complain too much - I’m adamant that the first penalty was outside the area.
“But don’t get me wrong, had we lost 1-0, my case would be a lot stronger than what it is.
The second penalty, I’m unsure of as well. But from there on, and in the second half when Derry scored the third on the breakaway, they were excellent. They kept the ball, they could have scored more and without any doubt, the better side won.”
Derry were 2-0 in front at the break. Both goals came from Aaron McEneff penalties on 18 and 42 minutes. The first spot kick was awarded for handball against Ciaran Coll while the second was given for a foul by Barry Molloy on Lukas Schubert.
Once the third went in shortly after half time - score by former Harps man Nathan Boyle - it was game over.
“We needed everything to go our way and the first goal, as it did last Friday night in Dalymount, killed us,” Horgan said.
“But that’s no excuse for the way we played in the last 20 minutes. It was a shambles and it’s the first time that players didn’t seem to have the heart and want to run.
“Derry runners were overlapping and we weren’t fit to run with them.
“Physically, we should be in decent shape. I think basically some people may have thrown the towel in during the last 20 minutes. That’s possibly the biggest disappointment from my point of view.
“Obviously the confidence is low, without a shadow of a doubt. Very similar to last week (against Bohemians), we were nil all and had chances to go ahead. I thought we created a few chances there tonight, even at 1-0 down.
“The first goal, it was a great diagonal ball from Vemmelund out to Schubert. Ciaran Coll was sleeping but to me, the foul (handball) was outside the area. They scored the penalty, Aaron McEneff took it and put it away.
“They got a second after that but at that stage, the game was still there. The third goal killed us. But, they kept the ball for fun and they showed the quality that they have. They are up there for a reason but that doesn’t take away how disappointed that we are with our 20 minutes at the end.”