FC Halifax Town manager Jim Harvey felt his side’s lack of scoring prowess was their undoing after they were relegated from the National League following a 1-1 draw with Macclesfield at The Shay.
Scott McManus gave Town the lead just before half-time but the goal was cancelled out after the interval by Danny Rowe, with Halifax hitting the post in added time through Kevin Roberts.
That draw, combined with Guiseley’s 4-3 win over Torquay, was enough to send Halifax back down into the Conference North after three years.
“It’s a terribly sad day, the boys are very disappointed in the changing room - it’s like a morgue,” said Harvey.
“They deserved more. The attitude, the character and the effort they’ve put in to try to stay at this level has been terrific, I couldn’t have asked for any more.
“It didn’t happen but we had the opportunities again today, which has happened a lot over recent weeks, we created good chances but haven’t had that ability to put the ball in the net - even in the last minute when Kevin Roberts appeared at the far post with a free header a yard out but unfortunately hit the post.
“It’s fine margins but we perhaps gave ourselves too much to do. It was great to get to the final day and give ourselves a chance because we had a lot of catching up to do, and we lost our main goalscorer in Shaun Tuton along the way.
“We thought we had enough to get over the line but we’ve just come up a little bit short.”
Harvey praised the efforts of goalscorer McManus, but was deflated those efforts were eventually all for nothing.
“Scott has been an excellent player since I came in. I’ve really enjoyed working with him, I think he’s a terrific talent and he bombs up and down that left side,” he said.
“His left foot is lovely and what a goal to set us up.
“I’m disappointed for him and everybody else because they’ve all put a big effort in.”
Harvey was disappointed a mix-up in defence led to Macclesfield’s equaliser.
“The fella looked like he was going to thump it but he scuffed it, Sam (Johnson) has got a hand to it but just not enough to keep it out,” he said.
“Kev Roberts and Bolts (James Bolton) collided going for the same ball and that’s probably the only mistake they’ve made all day between them.
“Unfortunately that resulted in a goal.”
The Town boss believes his team will put the relegation behind them in time for their FA Trophy final appearance at Wembley on May 22.
He added: “I know they’re all very despondent at the moment and they will be for a few days, but they put a real effort in.
“The little reward for them is that they have a trip to Wembley. It won’t be quite the same now having been relegated but this is football, it’s not life and death.
“We’ll go and hide and lick our wounds for a few days but then you have to come out again and start preparing for Wembley and for next year.
“They will come too terms with it, they will pick themselves up and we’ll go to Wembley and try to enjoy that as best we can.
“At the moment we’re down and gloomy but we’ll regroup and go down there and try to get a win.”