DEAN SAUNDERS admitted that Wrexham only had themselves to blame after failing to take three points from their clash against Kettering Town at Rockingham Road on Saturday which ended 1-1.

Wrexham took the lead through captain Dean Keates two minutes before the break but Kettering came more into the game in the second half and equalised from the penalty spot in the 84th minute.

Although Wrexham are now unbeaten in six matches, five of those games have ended in draws.

And having seen Wrexham once again surrender the lead, Saunders said his side got what they deserved after continually losing possession in the second half.

“We made so many chances,” he said. “We scored right on half-time but really we should have scored five or six goals in the first half.

“But we got the goal which was pleasing and I just thought of we could get another, Kettering might just lie down and we might get three or four.

“But we came out second half and were giving the ball away too much – we just kept giving it away. And consequently, if you keep giving the ball away and encouraging the opposition, they will eventually start getting the ball into their strikers which is what they did.

“We got deeper and deeper, and in the end they could have nicked it. But we had enough chances second half as well.

“I thought we only had ourselves to blame by constantly giving the ball away. I think we gave about seven or eight passes on the trot at one stage half-way through the second half.
“I could have brought all of them off.”

Saunders made five changes from the side that drew against York City in the previous outing with midfielder Jamie Tolley and striker Gareth Taylor handed their first starts of the season.

And with Andy Mangan also coming into the attack, Saunders thought his new-look strikeforce was effective.

“I thought the front three caused havoc in the first half,” said Saunders. “Andy Mangan got in behind them three times, Andy Morrell could have scored three or four, Gareth Taylor had a couple of efforts and Jamie Tolley had a good volley from the edge of the box.

“Jay Harris is clean through one against one to make it 2-0 and missed, so you end up paying at the other end.”

Centre-back Marvin Andrews was also recalled after missing the previous two games through injury and the Trinidadian gave away the late penalty following a foul on Iyseden Christie.

And Saunders had no complains about the decision to award the spot-kick which Jean-Paul Marna converted: “I thought Marvin had a brilliant game but it was a bit reckless for the penalty,” he said.

“It is penalty again with less than ten minutes to go, otherwise we had the points in the bag.

“Chris Blackburn has cleared the ball up the line, the ball went straight back in behind him, Marvin came across and didn’t time the tackle right.

“Consequently we have got one point instead of three.

“But it’s six games without defeat, and it’s a point away from home. It’s not all doom and gloom, we have not got beaten.”

After seeing Wrexham once again fail to hold onto their lead, Saunders said: “It is just like a striker who is not scoring. If you keep making chances and miss them it is the same thing, it is psychological.”

Wrexham lie 15th in the Conference table, six points adrift of the play-offs and nine away from new leaders Crawley Town.

And Saunders is targeting back-to-back victories at The Racecourse this week against Southport tomorrow and Histon on Saturday.

“I said if we win two games all the draws look alright,” he said. “The draws become two pointers if you win two games.

“We have just got to go again and try and get a win tomorrow and a win on Saturday.”