Dave Challinor was perfectly clear about what he thought of his side’s performance on Tuesday night in the Lancashire FA Trophy and pulled no punches about where he thinks his squad are at in terms of strength in depth after being knocked out at the first hurdle by Holker Old Boys, a team playing four leagues below The Coasters in the North West Counties Division One.

“I’ve said to them many, many times that they’ll make our decisions for us and rather than me talking all the time and them saying things and stating cases for why they believe they should be in the team they had enough of an opportunity tonight to go and prove why they should be in the team” Challinor stated.  “Actions speak a lot louder than words and the performance out there wasn’t acceptable and certainly from my perspective won’t be tolerated so a few of them are in for a bit of a shock.”

Challinor has publicly stated that this competition is not high on his agenda in terms of competitions he wants to do well in and he made seven changes to starting 11 that lined up against Plymouth in the FA Cup on Saturday.

“There was an opportunity for the lads out there that haven’t played a lot of first team football recently to show that they’re up for a place, or able to fight for a place in the starting eleven.

“In truth it’s probably told me what I already knew,” he added.  “Outside of maybe 11 or 12, there are people in the squad that aren’t up to the standard that we need them to be and pushing others.  So that obviously gives me an issue and gives me a problem and I’ll do whatever I can to strengthen.”

The Fylde boss was hopeful he would have had one or two selection headaches ahead of this weekend’s trip to North Ferriby United but he claimed the most difficult decision he now has to make is “who out of those that have played warrant a place on the bench because no one has done themselves any favours.”

Nothing can be taken away from Holker’s performance in this game as they matched up to Fylde for the full 90 minutes but Challinor said: “In terms of this game you obviously give credit to Holker in the fact that they kept going but they shouldn’t be anywhere near if the lads who are there, and who believe they have the ability to play higher, produce what they can.  Holker are four leagues below so if the people who are on the pitch are at it and are as good as what they think they believe then they should be able to put in a performance and they haven’t done that which, again, leaves me with a problem.”

Challinor pointed out that the played should have no excuses for their performance on the night adding: “Everyone who played in that game had something to prove and had some reason to play, whether it’s lads coming back from injury, lads who had been out on loan at other clubs, lads who have not been in the First Team squad to start with, lads who need a goal, everybody had a reason and a purpose out of that game.

“Now if that can’t drive you on and motivate you then you shouldn’t be playing football.  It’s not like we’ve come to a ground where it’s an horrible evening, the pitch is rubbish, the balls are rubbish, everything was perfect to play and to go out and put on a performance and they haven’t done that.”

You can watch the full interview on the club’s YouTube channel or just click on the link above.