LOUIS Langdown is calling for his youthful AFC Totton side to toughen up in the face of adversity.

After losing 4-0 at home to league leaders Taunton Town last weekend, the Stags were back on the receiving end on Tuesday as Paulton Rovers emerged 3-0 victors at the Total Branding Community Stadium.

A couple of refereeing decisions went against them, but Totton contributed to their own downfall with another missed penalty and Langdown felt they were a “a bit soft” coping with those setbacks.

With experienced defender Ian Oliver suspended and 17-year-old midfielder Matt Bozier returning on loan from Aldershot Town, the Stags fielded an even younger side than usual.

Langdown accepts that the learning curve will occasionally buckle, but says his players must learn to respond more positively when things don’t go their way.

“There’s no crisis, we’ve got to get the group back to being positive,” he stressed.

“Key moments went against us on Tuesday and it affected the players.

“Missing the penalty deflated them and, for Paulton's first goal, our defender Jack Barker was shoved in the back and didn’t get a foul.

“When things go against us that are not our fault, we need to make sure we don’t crumble.

“We mustn’t go all negative and look for excuses, we must stay positive.

“There's no point having a reaction after the game, we need to react within it.”

Totton, without a win in four league outings, have dropped to tenth in the Evo-South West, but are only five points off third spot with all still to play for.

Oliver is still missing for Saturday's trip to 20th-placed Slimbridge, but the club have been boosted by news that sought-after striker Craig Feeney, 25, has turned down interest from an unnamed National League South club.

“Feens is not going anywhere and we’re happy with that,” said Langdown. “We need experience within the group and Feens is crucial to that.

“We’ve been done by Salisbury, Taunton and Paulton in our last three at home, but the beauty of football is that games come thick and fast and it can change in a heartbeat.

“We’ll be up against a Slimbridge side who'll be in our faces and competing on a pitch that’s probably not the best.

“Sometimes you just have to grind out a result and hopefully we'll do that.”