Only early in the season but Bobcats have eye on top four
MACLEAN Bobcats have taken the first step on their mission to the North Coast Football Premier League top four with a 1-1 draw with Coffs Coast Tigers.
Though not the three points they were hoping for, the Bobcats showed enough fight to have coach Giuseppe Terranova convinced they were moving in the right direction.
"Across the park we were better than what we have been," Terranova said.
"This is a building block for us. We're on the board and away for the season."
Terranova lamented several missed opportunities in a game he said didn't come to life until the last five to 10 minutes.
"It was a stalemate until the last 10," Terranova said.
"I thought we controlled the game quite well.
"We had a goal disallowed in the final 10 minutes and they hit the crossbar in the same time."
You hear many coaches and commentators speak of how teams have to learn to win ugly, to better their opponents when it comes to the grind.
Maclean went some way in learning the art of grinding out the close result on Saturday, competing in a game that neither side could win pretty.
"As a spectacle it wasn't brilliant, but it was a much better game from them," Terranova said.
"I'm happy with how we played, and fingers crossed, we can continue that in the next few weeks.
"The young fellas played with a lot of confidence and it's good to see that building."
Slow starts have been one of the Bobcats' major problems so far this year.
It was something Terranova alluded to last week, describing his team's problems with starting on the back foot and forever chasing.
That problem dissipated on Saturday, with the Bobcats striking first blood through Jarrod Doyle and holding a lead for the first time.
"For once we weren't the team who conceded in the first 15 minutes," Terranova said.
"The draw is a fair result. If we had won I would've said we deserved to win.
"The disallowed goal was pretty disheartening. We all thought it was given - the referee and one of the linesmen pointed to the centre circle so we believed we had it."
Maclean will be back at home next week against Northern Storm Thunder, while Westlawn Tigers travel to league leaders Coffs United.
All eyes will be on the following week, however, with the first Clarence Valley derby of 2014 to be played at Westlawn's Barnier Park.