BOSS Tom Killick labelled as "unacceptable" Poole Town's performance against fellow National South strugglers Gloucester City and admitted he had been baffled by the 3-0 defeat, writes JACK TANNER.

Dolphins had appeared on the up after earning four points in their past two games but the mini-revival was halted by an efficient Tigers outfit who controlled the Black Gold Stadium contest.

Home keeper Nick Hutchings was called into action throughout the first period but it was Poole that came closest to opening the scoring before the break when Steve Devlin smacked the post from distance.

Gloucester took the lead 10 minutes after the restart via Karnell Chambers’s long-range strike and the hosts could muster nothing in response, with City adding two more through Joe Parker and Jack Storer.

Following a lengthy inquiry in the Poole dressing room, Killick told the Daily Echo: “I can’t pinpoint exactly where it went wrong. We started off badly, they started off quite well – whichever way you want to put it.

“We had a brief resurgence halfway through the first half, where we felt we gave ourselves something to build on. But at the start of the second half we surrendered the initiative again.

“Irrespective of the opposition’s league placing, to perform like we did and not come close to winning the game let alone take anything from it, ending up being comprehensively beaten, is unacceptable.

“We look like we started in a tentative fashion. We’re the home side so we should be trying to take control of the game but we didn’t do that. It was such a lacklustre performance and I can’t understand where it came from.

“We showed a lot of spirit against Oxford and Havant but today we seemed to lack pretty much everything.”

Dolphins ended the game with 10 men after Will Spetch limped off through injury and Killick now has to construct plan B with a wafer-thin squad.

Despite resources being tight, the boss refused to hide behind excuses after Poole's relegation concerns were cranked up a notch.

He added: “I’m not pointing fingers and the circumstances are the circumstances but we are simply not equipped in terms of the squad. We’re having to play three young players across midfield and then we’ve only got four youngsters on the bench.

“We haven’t got enough senior players but we can’t get any more. That’s not going to change and we can’t keep feeling sorry for ourselves.

"It shouldn’t deflect from what was a woeful performance.”

Poole face another hugely important fixture against a relegation rival when third-bottom Concord Rangers visit the Black Gold Stadium on Tuesday (kick-off 7.45pm).

Dolphins: Hutchings, Lindsay, Moore (Balmer, 65), Spetch, Whisken, Pettefer (Mayes, 75), Harfield, Devlin, Bentley, Bedford, Neale (Dickson, 65). Unused subs: Wright, Rees (g/k).