CRAIG Davis believes hosting Taunton Town on Saturday (3pm) is “not the worst thing in the world” following Tuesday’s heartbreaking Hampshire FA Cup semi-final defeat to Blackfield & Langley.

Facing the runaway leaders of the Evo-Stik South West could be seen as a daunting prospect for a Winchester City team who, along with the cup upset, are without a win in their last three league games.

But whereas one or two of those league disappointments left Davis angry and disappointed, the opposite was true on Tuesday as he admitted to feeling “quite sorry” for his players as they bowed out to a 24th-minute Joe Butcher goal against the Sydenhams Premier high-fliers.

“We played well against Blackfield and I couldn’t have asked a lot more from the players,” he said. “But for some woeful finishing in the first half, which we had to do better with, we could have been 5-2 up at half-time. It was a catalogue of missed chances.

“Second half, it was a total backs-to-the-wall display from them for the majority of it and we just couldn’t get through.

"Credit to Blackfield for some resolute and impressive defending. They hung on for the win that takes them through.”

Rather than dwell on defeat, Davis’s top priority is to lift his team up again in time for Saturday's big home test against a Taunton side who are 11 points clear of second-place Salisbury at the top.

“It (recent results) is hugely disappointing because the lads have worked really hard,” said Davis.

“It’s a difficult time really, there’s no hiding from that, but we’ve got to keep going and keep believing.

"I don’t care what anyone says from within or from outside the club, I haven’t given up on something special this year, the players haven’t and we need a bit of fortune that has totally deserted us but we will keep fighting for every point.

“It’s not the worst thing in the world to be playing Taunton.

“They’re comfortably the best side in the league so, in a way, it’s a ‘pressure off ’ game because no one expects us to get anything.

“We tend to be better when people write us off. They did that at the start of the season and yet we’ve done well to this point.

“People can keep writing us off if they want.

“It’s important not to feel sorry for ourselves. I try telling that to the lads and myself.”

Dan Williamson, who missed Tuesday’s game due to work commitments, will be back on Saturday, but City now have Adam Tomasso unavailable for two weeks.

Defender Joe Cook is back running again, but still some way off fitness, as is midfielder Liam Gilbert who also has a foot problem.