Cove Rangers manager John Sheran was disappointed his team’s display as they exited the Irn-Bru Cup with a 3-0 defeat to Northern Ireland side Crusaders.
The Aberdeen team also had Scott Ross sent off on a frustrating afternoon.
Sheran said: “I think we are a bit frustrated.
“We didn’t play well first half. All credit to Crusaders for putting us under pressure.
“But we didn’t play anything like we could or should have done.
“Then to give away the goal right on half-time was poor from our point of view.
“And we felt the second goal was offside, at that point we were in the game and starting to get a foothold.
“On the rest of the showing I felt we would have given ourselves a chance had it been 1-0.
“Even at the start of the second half we were in a better position territorially.
“We were getting one or two little opportunities.
“But you can see their qualities and you can see the league across there is a bit sharper and a bit better than what we’re used to.
“It was a lesson learned from that point of view.
“But we felt at 1-0 we were in the game and the match swings on the second goal.
“There is a lot of frustration from every-body.”
On the sending-off of defender Ross, Sheran added: “I think it’s one of those ones where he didn’t lash out at the guy. “It’s just one of those ones that happen, but I felt it was a bit soft.”
Crusaders boss Stephen Baxter said: “I was pleased with the performance because we rested five of our very top players and we were still very comfortable in the game. “That’s pleasing, we kept the ball well, got it into good areas and scored goals at the right time.
“I think on the whole we have to be pleased with that.
“Cove battled bravely but they didn’t get the penetration behind our two centre-halves, so we weren’t really troubled and we just had enough quality to pass it in good areas.”