Neal Ardley admitted he could have ditched all 10 outfield players after ‘the worst 45 minutes of the season’ in defeat to Torquay today.
The Wimbledon boss made a double substitution at half-time in the 2-0 defeat to the relegation threatened Division Two strugglers, with Alan Bennett and Luke Moore the men to get the hook.
However, he admitted it could have been any one of his misfiring team to have been given first use of the showers after a display unrecognisable from most others this season.
He said: “I’m dumbfounded to be honest. We have turned up and after 15 minutes I’m seeing players who have been excellent all season, playing without an ounce of energy or enthusiasm about them - and that was 10 players.
“At half time when you can only make two or three subs it is really hard when you have 10 players who are woefully off their game and short of energy or confidence whatever it happens to be.”
Despite their sterile showing, there appeared little in the game until Will Antwi’s hideous attempt at a clearance led to Krystian Pearce opening the scoring on 28 minutes, before Jayden Stockley added a second three minutes from the break.
However, Ardley claimed his side’s defending was suspect from minute one and he had seen the inevitable happening long before it took place.
He added: “We hadn’t made one good clearance during the game. We did not get one beyond the halfway line at any point.
“Our passing, our touch and everything was off. We didn’t look like we were going to get a second ball or win any headers against their strikers.
“We didn’t look like we would win any headers against their defenders either or that we had a run in us off the ball.
“They might have been really at it because of their new manager, but our performance was not acceptable. We have got to match them and then go at it and show our skill.
“Ten players did not turn up today and I’m at a loss to know where that came from.”