Daisy Hill endured a night to forget on Monday evening when they fell to a 5-0 defeat at home to Ashton Athletic in the North West Counties League First Division North.

A hat-trick from visiting centre forward Thomas Romano was the highlight of an impressive display from an enterprising Ashton side, whose pace and counter attacking play caused Daisy problems throughout.

It was a hugely disappointing result for Daisy after collecting a fine 4-0 win at Steeton 48 hours earlier, and manager Lee Hill was in no mood for offering excuses after the game.

“I said to the lads beforehand Ashton Athletic would come up here with their tails up and looking to take the points and we need to stand up to that,” said Hill. “But Ashton forced the agenda and wanted it a bit more, and our lads just seemed to lack that desire to go and win a game of football, whereas their players had that.

“We won in a really good manner on Saturday, but once again we have not done that in back-to-back games.

“It’s like we win a game and think we have cracked it, and if you turn up with that attitude, this is what happens.

“We had some opportunities, but over the course of the game Ashton also had chances, and theirs were more clearcut.

“We always looked vulnerable when we were defending, and I’ve said before this season that it seems we are either a nine out of 10 or a five out of 10 team.

“You have got earn the right to play football in this league as there are no easy games, and at the moment we just lack that ability to put in a seven or eight out of 10 in every week.”

The night began badly for Daisy when they conceded an opening goal after just five minutes, when a left-wing cross was headed in at the far post by Sullivan Barker, taking a deflection off Ben Unsworth on the way.

Daisy hit back and created two decent chances at the midway point of the half, when Alex Dodd set up Sam Twist for a shot at the Ashton keeper Joe Beswick, and he was in action again two minutes later to deny Jamie Ramwell when Twist turned provider.

But on 26 minutes, Ashton doubled their lead when Daisy keeper Morgan Newns could only push a well-struck free-kick into the path of Romano, who tapped home from close range, and the game was all but over when Ashton added a third nine minutes later.

A Daisy attack broke down on the edge of the Ashton box, and with players out of position a quick counter attack and a terrific pass to Romano sent him through on goal to beat Newns from 10 yards.

Almost straight from the restart, Daisy were reduced to 10 men when Ryan Talbot was red carded for a challenge, although the numbers were evened up on the stroke of half time when Ashton Athletic’s left-back, Ethan Pearce, was also shown a red card, for an off-the-ball incident brought to the referee’s attention by his assistant.

Ashton passed up a great opportunity to add a fourth goal on 57 minutes, when they were awarded a penalty, but Deklan Hill’s effort was well saved by Newns, diving low to his left.

But at the midway point in the second half, the in-form Romano completed his treble, tucking the ball away from close range after another quick Ashton break.

To their credit Daisy kept going, and after Dean Singleton headed just wide from Jack Iley’s free-kick, the always lively Dodd came close to grabbing a consolation goal when his well-struck shot was pushed away at full stretch by Beswick.

But a good night for the visitors was rounded off a minute from time, when substitute Jack Smith added a fifth goal with a fine solo effort.

Daisy are back in action in the North West Counties League next Tuesday, when they travel to Nelson.