A lack of fitness and two slices of misfortune condemned Todmorden Borough to a fourth success defeat in the West Lancashire League.
Steve Hook’s side went down 3-2 away to Milnthorpe Corinthians on Saturday after two goals from Jamie Melvin had given them a 2-1 lead approaching the final quarter.
They have slipped to the foot of Division Two, their only points having come from a 2-0 home win over Barrow Wanderers on the opening day. although they have played fewer games than everyone else.
Last season’s boss John Gilford said: “It was disappointing because we were close again. But we were not at the races in the last 20 minutes.”
Gilford said Borough had also run out of steam against CMB and Furness Cavaliers and dropped points as a result.
“It comes down to fitness - we need to trainer harder but you are relying on the commitment of the players.”
Tod made a superb start on a perfect, award-winning pitch at Milnthorpe and took the lead within five minutes.
The returning Ben Whitham was quick to show how tricky he can be with the ball at his feet, setting up Melvin for a tap-in at the back post.
Borough were buoyant and continued to play nice football but their hosts improved and drew level after 25 minutes when Pete Goldsmith made a fine save at the near post and Danny Welsh’s attempted clearance hit Adam Walker and the ball finished in the net.
Dean Farry hit the foot of a post in the second half before the visitors regained the lead through Melvin with Whitham again doing the damage to Milnthorpe in the build-up.
Corinthians brought on replacements and one of them used his speed to trouble Tod, a Terry Lowe mis-kick gifting Milnthorpe an equaliser.
The decisive goal came five minutes from time when the substitute raced on to a through ball and finished.
Gilford said: “We scored four goals out of five but still ended up losing 3-2.”
Tod travel to Atherton Town in the Lancashire Cup on Saturday with the pressure off against a Manchester League Premier Division side.