We need to start winning – Hockaday
FOREST Green manager Dave Hockaday could not hide his frustration after his side fired blanks again at Cambridge United, casting them further adrift of the Blue Square Bet Premier play-offs.
A goalless draw at the Abbey Stadium would normally be deemed a decent return, but after back-to-back defeats without scoring it represented a damaging blow to Rovers' hopes of a top-five finish.
Hockaday said: "Given the chances that we had, especially in the first half and one in the second, we're disappointed because we need wins.
"We've kept a clean sheet but we got a big ragged at the end because we threw forwards on to try and win the game.
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"A clean sheet is something we needed to get into our game but we're disappointed with a point.
"Their keeper (Craig Ross) made two outstanding saves, to be fair to him, and Chris Stokes had an absolute open goal in the second half but hit the lad on the line.
"We had a couple of good penalty appeals, and at the end of the game Sam Russell was called upon to tip a couple over the crossbar, so it must have been an exciting game for the neutral."
Hockaday made three changes to his side from the 2-0 defeat at Woking four days earlier, including a recall for Aarran Racine in central defence in preference to both Eddie Oshodi and Ed Asafu-Adjaye.
His faith in Racine was rewarded, the ex-Southampton man producing a commanding display in helping Rovers to a first clean sheet in four outings.
Hockaday said: "I think man for man Cambridge are possibly the tallest team in the league, and I just felt if we negated their big number ten (Tom Elliott) it would take away a big part of their game.
"Aarran helped us to do that, and it was only at the end that we looked a bit nervy because we had so many forwards on the pitch."
The team directly above sixth-placed Rovers are Grimsby Town, who visit the New Lawn tomorrow night boasting a four-point advantage from three fewer fixtures.
Making no attempt to play down the significance of the fixture, Hockaday has called on fans to play their part in a potentially season-defining clash.
He added: "It's massive. Our crowd have been brilliant of late, getting bigger and bigger and making plenty of noise.
"We're getting used to crowds of four figures, so get yourselves down there on Tuesday.
"Grimsby have the meanest defence away from home, so it will be a tight game and a tough game.
"But we're really looking forward to it because at the moment we're in unchartered territory."