Dom Telford in rallying cry to Crawley Town fans ahead of relegation battle

Crawley Town vice-captain Dom Telford said the team’s struggles this season ‘really hurts’ the players and pleaded with fans ‘to be behind us’ in the final part of the season.
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Boos at half-time set the tone as struggling Crawley slumped to a 5-2 home defeat against Carlisle on Saturday afternoon (February 25). Click here to see our player ratings.

Paul Simpson's side travelled to West Sussex as the joint highest scorers in the league and the game was over at half-time, after goals from Joel Senior, Omari Patrick, Owen Moxon and Morgan Feeney.

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Crawley improved in the second-half and found two goals but it was too little, too late as the visitors ran out 5-2 winners.

Dom Telford scored a late consolation goal for Crawley as Carlisle ran out 5-2 winners. Photo: Cory PickfordDom Telford scored a late consolation goal for Crawley as Carlisle ran out 5-2 winners. Photo: Cory Pickford
Dom Telford scored a late consolation goal for Crawley as Carlisle ran out 5-2 winners. Photo: Cory Pickford

Telford said: "It was embarrassing really. There's no point sugar coating it.

"We were nowhere near good enough at all. I just feel sorry for the fans who pay good money to come and watch us. It's not good enough. It really hurts.

"Everything we've worked on in training, we didn't do today. That's the responsibility of me and the other ten lads. We didn't perform today. We can only apologise."

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Telford said Crawley ‘actually started okay’ in the game but Carlisle ‘took their chances and we don't stand up to it’.

"Some of the goals were conceded weren't good enough,” he said. “When you see concede five, fans will look at the guys at the back but everyone has to take responsibility. I'm embarrassed to be honest.”

Telford, who scored from close range towards the end of the game, said he is only happy to score when it helps the team.

He said: “I love scoring goals but it's too little too late. We started playing on the 75th minute. It's easy to play when the game is done.

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"When you're 5-1 down it will only matter if you score four. You want to score to get your teams points. That's what I'm here to do.

"We need to come out of the blocks and let teams know they’re in a game. They were just better than us today.

“We are all hurting. We are in a relegation battle.”

Crawley stay second from bottom, with four games in hand on 22nd-placed Hartlepool – who moved two points clear after rescuing a dramatic 3-3 draw at home to Walsall.

Addressing concerns from the fans, Telford said: “We are working hard. We hear the frustrations and we feel them. We are frustrated at the same time.

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“When you're not winning, it ruins your weekend and your week. We are blessed we've got a game on Tuesday to put it right [at Tranmere]. Otherwise it would be a long week.

"We will go again. We will prepare and recover right. Tuesday is another opportunity to get three points.

"In times like this, you have to stick together. We need everyone to be behind us these last 16 games. We are giving it our all.”

Telford, who is now into double figures for goals this season, remains unsatisfied with how he is performing at Crawley.

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“I haven't been good enough,” he said. “I take responsibility.

"My family come and watch and I don't want to be letting them down as much as the fans.

"We are not done. We are not going to roll over and let it be easy. I have every confidence in the group.

"We've got a very good manager with a very good assistant and very good staff. We have everything. It's down to us. It's our responsibility to put it right."