NEW College returned to action for the first time in eight weeks on Saturday but squandered a two-goal lead to crash out of the Supplementary Cup following a 3-2 defeat at Carterton.

Lee Toomey and Joe Hiscock had given the students the advantage early on but they couldn’t see the job through and ultimately left Oxfordshire with nothing to show for their efforts.

College were without boss Rob Hopkins due to work commitments but while the absent boss was pleased to get a rare game on knows the areas his young players need to work on.

“The fact we played is good although to lose like that from being 2-0 up isn’t so good,” he said.

“Now we can see where we are at having had eight weeks off so now we can make some alterations which is a good thing before we get back into a proper routine of training to get ourselves ready for games.

“Now it’s going to be a hectic run towards the end of the season and it’s going to be all action from here. It will mean the intensity and focus in training will be different and that’s probably a good thing.

“The one thing we will take from this weekend is that if you don’t play for a long period of time then you lose your ability to put into practice the things you would have done week in week out.

“If we had asked them to launch the ball and run after it we might have been more successful but that isn’t how we like to do things.”

Despite the loss, boss Hopkins knows he’s in a unique situation when it comes to motivating his players after a defeat.

“Generally the young lads sulk for two hours after a game and it’s all doom and gloom but then after that it’s all about looking forward to training and they can’t wait to play again,” he said.

“That’s the great thing about it for us because they can recover quite quickly and our job is to make them see every game is a learning curve for them.

“We have to help them maintain the things they have done well and then work on and improve the areas in which they haven’t done so well, that’s our job over the years they are with us.”

College return to action on Wednesday night against local rivals Purton.