Nantwich Town 2 King's Lynn 0
17th August 2013
Gary Setchell admitted his players were like "rabbits in the headlights" during the first half-an-hour of this opening-day defeat.
Setchell pulled no punches after the loss, but still took plenty of positives out of his side's 2-0 reverse in Cheshire.
A late strike from Aaron Burns confirmed the three points for the Dabbers after Adam Carden had opened the scoring for the hosts in the seventh minute.
The Linnets boss said: "Nantwich started the first 20 minutes exactly how I wanted and expected us to start.
"We started badly and we looked like rabbits in the headlights for a while. I think we showed them a bit too much respect.
"After the interval we did exactly the same to Nantwich but we just couldn't put the ball in the net.
"Nantwich set a reasonable standard for the league and we are going to have another 45 games like we had today."
Despite the defeat, Nantwich boss Danny Johnson feels that the Linnets are well-equipped to deal with the demands of the Evo-Stik Premier League in the month's ahead.
Johnson said: "King's Lynn should be reasonably happy considering it was their first game in the league.
"They competed really well and they have got something to build on, without question, for the remainder of the season.
'It's a tough league and when you go and play games away from home you are not always going to come back with the three points.'
The Linnets were caught square at the back for the opening goal when Mark Jones' precision pass picked out Carden to slot past Danny Gay.
Lynn's best spell of the game came after the interval with Setchell's half-time team talk still ringing in his player's ears.
Lynn started the second half impressively and midfielder Dan Quigley headed wide on 48 minutes.
A minute later, Shane Tolley found space on the Nantwich penalty spot to swivel blaze wide.
Lynn's pressure increased and Nantwich goalkeeper Luke Simpson failed to punch a cross and Dan Jacob shot wide again on 52 minutes.
Simpson atoned for his error a minute later as he parried away the dangerous Andrew Hall's low cross-cum-shot.
Midway through the second period, Simpson made a stunning save from George Thomson's dipping free-kick when the ball looked to be creeping in at his far post.
The Linnets threw men forward in search of an equaliser and were caught on the counter-attack in the 83rd minute when Burns' delightful lob wrapped up the three points.
: Gay, Clarke, Yong, Lee, Gulliver, Bunting (Mulready), Hall, Quigley, Thomson, Tolley (Spriggs), Jacob Subs: Watson, Butt, Fryatt.
Booked: Yong, Quigley, Mulready.
: Simpson, Frost, Caldecott, Young (Maguire), Davis, Courtney, Carden, Jones, Burns, Clayton (Amadi), Harrop. Subs: Egerton-Wilson, Devenny, Lambert.
Scorers: Carden (7) Burns (83).