HENLEY Town were denied a money-spinning cup run after they were beaten 5-0 against Amersham Town in the first qualifying round of the FA Vase.
Four goals were conceded in the first half as the Lilywhites failed to find a diversion from their poor league form at the Triangle ground.
Manager Mark Coles said his side had shot themselves in the foot early on to ensure the Spartan South Midlands Division 1 outfit enjoyed a safe passage through to the next round.
He said: “We just made some classic mistakes in the first half and gave ourselves too much to do.
“Their passing was much better than ours. They hardly gave the ball away whereas we gave it away a lot, to be fair.
“But we weren’t far off. It might seem that we’re getting hammered every week because of the results. We conceded a stupid goal in the first minute and then held out for 20 minutes when we played okay. But we ended up giving away some sloppy goals.
“At the minute we’re just a bit naive and the balance of their side was a bit better than us. In the second half they only got one goal and that was near the end.
“We had a couple of chances and if we could have taken them in the first half it might have been different.”
The winner of the tie won £500 and Coles said it was a shame for the financially-stricken club to lose out on the cash prize.
He is now looking to bring in more experienced players on loan to boost his young side and hinted he may approach Marlow for temporary signings.
With only three teenagers to call upon at centre back in Olly Hunter, Ollie Pollard and Liam Beasant, he is looking for an older head to play alongside the youngsters as well as a new striker.
He said: “The team is still growing and I keep saying every week but that’s what’s happening. We had two young centre backs playing but tried to make the midfield a little bit stronger.
“Until I can get some new players — I don’t need many, just a couple that are really experienced and want to play for us — we’re struggling.
“I need a big strong striker that’s going to boss other teams’ back fours and help the young kids up there score the goals we need. I also need a centre back to play alongside one of the younger lads.
“I don’t think we have a problem in midfield as such because I’ve got Liam Painter playing who passes it well.”
Coles conceded that his pursuit for new signings means some of his squad will find themselves demoted in the pecking order.
But he said it was necessary if his side is to kick start their season and protect his own position, having replaced former manager David Tuttle in the summer.
“It’s harsh, I know, but I’m going to have to look at getting players in that are good enough to replace the players that aren’t,” he said. “That’s the harsh reality.
“I could get the sack anytime. I don’t think the chairman will because we have a good relationship but he could say it’s not working and I have to go.
“But if the players aren’t doing me favours, I’ve got to look at players who will. Not that I want to because they are a good bunch of lads.
“Results affect jobs and supporters don’t want to see Henley getting beat 5-0 every game.”