Assistant boss Jon McCarthy insists he, manager Steve Burr and the players were hurting as much as the Chester FC fans on Monday - and expects a response against Bromley this weekend.

Supporters were understandably downbeat after an uninspired display in the 1-0 defeat to rivals Tranmere Rovers on Sunday , which leaves the Blues on the fringes of the relegation scrap.

A run of three wins from 15 league games means Chester cannot relax yet but two home fixtures in quick succession offer a chance to right the weekend’s wrongs and create some breathing space, beginning with Bromley on Saturday (3pm).

“We don’t hide the fact that Sunday was a really disappointing day for everybody at the club,” McCarthy said.

“It was a poor performance and we didn’t get anything going attacking-wise really and believe me we had the same level of disappointment as the supporters. We feel it too because we are living it.

“I’m not going to make excuses and I think the reports were quite fair because it was a derby and even though Tranmere have the bigger budget and the more experience squad, in those games you always have a chance if you turn up and put in a good performance like we’ve done against Wrexham.

In pictures: Match gallery from Chester's derby defeat to Tranmere

“We spoke before the game about the need to soak things up and then concentrate on our jobs once it had kicked-off and some of our younger players didn’t handle the atmosphere and I think that lack of experience was a factor.

“Of course that’s disappointing and it’s something we need to deal with better when we got to Wrexham in a couple of weeks but we’ve got to move on and these next two games are games that we have targeted as ones where we have to get some points.

“It’s the same as the Altrincham and Kidderminster games, and to be fair we came out with four points from those games and we’ll be looking for that at least from these two.”

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Bromley head to the Lookers Vauxhall Stadium in good form having beaten relegation-threatened Welling United midweek to record a third straight win.

Moses Emmanuel has scored 19 times in the league for Bromley this season
Moses Emmanuel has scored 19 times in the league for Bromley this season

Chester, who have extended Nyal Bell’s loan from Rochdale for another month, have Tom Shaw back in the squad but will be without Ian Sharps and Luke George due to hamstring problems, although the latter is close to resuming training.

The absence of Sharps is almost certain to see a return to four at the back with Johnny Hunt and Ryan Higgins in the frame to start against Ravens.

McCarthy said: “The gaffer went to watch Bromley on Tuesday night and they are on a good run at the moment but if you look at their record then they concede a lot of goals so that is something we well look at.

“They were in good form when we went down there earlier in the season and we had some chances before a couple of mistakes allowed them to take control.

“They are a direct side and have got pace out wide so that’s something else for us to think about but we’ll look at everything and prepare to go and get the win.

“If you look at this season, we’ve not had the same ups and downs as last year and we’ve not been able to go on a run of winning three or four games like we did.

“But we have been able to beat the teams like Altrincham, Halifax, Southport and Torquay when we have needed to and we will be looking to do that again over these next two games.

“If we can do that then it sets us up nicely for two two games against Wrexham and Eastleigh and some of the doom and gloom starts to lift.”