Newcastle Jets coach Gary van Egmond has given a stinging assessment of his side's performance after playing out a lacklustre 0-0 with the Perth Glory at Hunter Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
The Jets dominated the opening half of play, controlling possession and the tempo of the game but except for a couple of near misses, they were unable to push home their advantage.
The Glory managed to work their way back into the match in the second half and perhaps had the clearer chances to grab all three points as the match opened up in the last 20 minutes.
"I thought the football was poor, the way in which we played," van Egmond said of his side's performance.
"We created a number of opportunities and we didn't take them unfortunately.
"I thought there was too many times we didn't look for the right solution playing out.
"People looked nervous, not just us but also them. It looked like a game both teams didn't want to lose, rather than a team wanting to win.
"It was a warm day, which makes it more difficult for the players in regards to their movement, but still you have to have that stronger mentality.
"We could have given ourselves a better chance if we had of taken the advantage of some set pieces and the opportunities that arose. We just have to have that real aggression in the front third and that desire to really put that ball in the net."
Van Egmond was particularly harsh on his younger brigade of players for the second week in a row.
As many as five of the Jets line-up played in national sides including the FIFA under-20 World Cup during the off-season but that experience has yet to translate to performing well in the A-League.
The Jets coach said some were perhaps 'over-awed' in last week's season-opening 2-0 loss to Sydney, while this week he was critical of their commitment.
"They need to come down on terra firma and start working for the Jets and getting results for the Jets," van Egmond said.
"When you have those opportunities against a team away from home, you have to have the killer instinct in that front third.
"I am not saying that all the players are in that boat but there were a few that didn't put their hand up and have a real dip.
"I think it is nerves. I think it is about them trying to get more confidence from the perspective of the game, but at the end of the day we are all accountable and they have to make sure they turn up."
Meanwhile, the Jets will sweat on the fitness of former Dutch international Kew Jaliens. The key defender was forced from field early in the second half with a corked thigh and the recovery progress will be assessed as the Jets look for their first win of the season when they travel to Wellington to take on the Phoenix next Sunday.
Perth Glory coach Alistair Edwards, meanwhile, is looking forward to his side's first home game of the season after two tough games on the road to start the campaign.
After kicking off the season with a 3-1 loss to Adelaide the Glory produced a gutsy effort to earn a 0-0 draw with the Jets in Newcastle on Sunday afternoon, a result that has Edwards in a buoyant mood as his side looks ahead to hosting the Melbourne heart at the re-developed nib Stadium next weekend.
"It is always tough to come here to Newcastle and we have had some decent results through the years here, but to come back with a draw, one point is good, but as we finished the game strongly it would have been nicer to come back with three," Edwards said.
"With two tough away games and now we have got the opportunity to bring the improved performance back to nib Stadium in Perth and the fans there are really craving for some A-League.
"They have seen what has happened on the East Coast and they are really looking forward to seeing some really good football."
The Glory spent the first half of Sunday afternoon's game defending their own goal as the Jets pressed for the strike.
But a change of game plan at half-time and a tinkering in the point of attack to Newcastle's wings proved advantageous for the Perth side as they created a number of clear opportunities in the second half and almost stole the match with chances to Jamie MacLaren and Sidnei Moraes.
"We weren't particularly happy with our first half, from a coaching perspective because we didn't keep the ball as well as we wanted to," Edwards said.
"We spoke about it in the change room at half-time to really make sure we go forward in a structured way and to make sure we were balanced off and we did that and the front four guys caused a bit of havoc particularly in the last half and hour.
"We got control of the ball and we circulated it very well and we managed to break very well and create some good chances. And with some better finishing we should have got on the scoresheet."