The pressure on Barrow AFC to pick up results at home was no excuse for their collapse against Dover Athletic on Saturday, insists manager Ian Evatt.

The Bluebirds have struggled for victories at Holker Street in recent months, but they looked to be strolling to victory against Dover when Lewis Hardcastle put them 2-0 up with a quarter of the game left.

Instead, they conceded three times in the last 16 minutes to crash to a 3-2 defeat that left Evatt fuming with his players, as he feels such a collapse has happened too often this season.

AFC have still only won in front of their own crowd three times since October, with Evatt believing his players should have no reason for feeling nervous while playing at home.

He said: “There’s no excuses, I’m not going to sit here and stick up for anybody.

“If they can’t deal with 1500 fans - which is fantastic, by the way - moaning about how they’re playing or kicking a ball forward, that’s not pressure.

“Pressure is 80-90,000 people at Wembley Stadium for a Championship play-off final, where there’s £120 million [at stake]. That’s pressure.

“There’s no pressure here, they should be enjoying their football, have a desire to win football matches and at times this season we haven’t shown that enough.

“We haven’t shown that real bite - we’re too naive, we’re too soft and we’re too nice and that needs to change.”

Barrow had looked fairly comfortable in the second half against Dover until Mitch Brundle pulled a goal back for them in the 74th minute, but having their lead halved sent them into a tailspin.

They barely got out of their half for the remainder of the game and by the time Ricky Modeste had completed the turnaround for the Whites with a minute to go, it came as no surprise.

When asked about why his team went away from their normal game, Evatt said: “I think once we get the second, we think that’s it and it’s game over.

“I just get the feeling that when one goes in [against us], I don’t know what’s going to happen and that’s not the kind of spirit that we want in the changing room.

“We need to make sure that we see games out and if that means winning ugly, then we need to win ugly.

“We need to learn to win ugly and we’re not - when we win, we win playing beautiful football and really beating teams.

“Do we play nasty, aggressive, horrible football? No, we don’t, and we need to get that blend and mixture of the two because you’re not going to play well every game.”