JOHN Paul-Dow admits Neilston have no-one to blame but themselves after falling to a 3-0 home loss to St Roch’s on Saturday – their second successive league defeat.

The Farmer’s Boys have enjoyed a successful start to life in the Championship but they have struggled recently, losing away to Darvel Juniors last week before coming unstuck against St Roch’s at Brig O’Lea on Saturday.

Neilston did carve out the first opportunity of the match 15 minutes in but Craig Patterson’s effort was flagged offside.

And things went from bad to worse for the home side when Simon McBryde was ordered off after a poor challenge.

St Roch’s made the most of their man advantage immediately, opening the scoring with a quick breakaway goal before Dow was forced into a double change, with both Patterson and Euan Clark picking up knocks.

The visitors doubled their lead before the interval as McManus slotted home from 12 yards after he was fouled in the box.

Dow’s troops gambled after the restart, throwing men forward in search of a goal, but it didn’t pay off, with Eddie Ferns netting the Candy Rock’s third of the afternoon to put the game to bed.

Neilston now sit in 10th in the West Region Championship after nine matches and Dow reckons they must now regroup after a testing couple of weeks.

He said: “That was a sore one to take. We lost Simon after 15 minutes, but we can have no complaints with that as he’s taken a heavy touch and lunged in. We had to try and regroup after that but St Roch’s scored just after after we went down to 10 men and it was backs to the wall after that.

“We weren’t creating much chances at 2-0 down so we pushed forward a bit and they opened us up to get their third and it was over after that.

“Saturday was the first time we’ve been comprehensively beaten this season. I don’t want to use going down to 10 men as an excuse either. We’ve got no excuses.

“Yes, going down to 10 men against a team like St Roch’s will always be an uphill struggle but we’ve had a word with the boys after the match and will do again in training tomorrow to try and put things right.”

The Farmer’s Boys can now put their patchy league form behind them as they travel up to Scone in the Scottish Junior Cup and Dow confessed that a successful cup campaign will be a welcome break.

He added: “I think it’ll be good to get a wee break from the league now after suffering back-to-back defeats. Hopefully we get a victory in the cup then it will be all guns blazing back into the league the following week.”

The Neilston supporters bus will leave Brig O’ Lea at 10.45am on Saturday for the trip to Perthshire to play Scone Thistle in the Scottish Junior Cup. Kick-off 2.30pm. Anyone wishing to travel should contact the committee.