KEITH Rowland admits the occasion got to his side as Aveley suffered a 5-0 defeat at Notts County to crash out of the FA Trophy at the quarter-final stage.

Goals from Jim O’Brien, Tom Crawford, Sam Osborne, Kyle Wootton and Scott Wilson resulted in National League heavyweights Notts County bringing the Millers’ historic run in the competition to an end at Meadow Lane.

While conceding Aveley were not at their best against the Magpies, boss Rowland felt it was a learning curve for his Isthmian North promotion chasers.

“I’ve got no complaints about the result,” Rowland told Aveley FC TV.

“First and foremost, I must give Notts County credit because they were fitter and stronger from start to finish.

“You expect that because they are full-time and they deserved the victory.

“We expected Hughesy (David Hughes) to be in for a busy afternoon, there is no doubt about that.

“It’s a little bit disappointing that I think the whole day got to a few of the players more than we hoped.

“They are young boys so you half expect it, but we had too many where the occasion got to them.

“It’s very hard to have a go at the lads when they have won nine games in a tournament to get to this stage.

“Getting to the 10th game in a competition and being among the last eight in the country is terrific.

“We’re all well versed in that and I just wanted the boys to perform how I felt they could.

“They maybe didn’t but they know and understand that.

“They were a little bit disappointed about that, but we have to give credit to Notts County.”

O’Brien’s long range strike squirmed through Hughes’ hands to give the hosts a 32nd minute lead.

Crawford and Osborne added their names to the scoresheet before the break, while Wootton and Wilson rounded off the scoring.

But Rowland was keen to praise the vocal Aveley following.

“The boys tried and it didn’t come off for us,” added Rowland.

“It was an excellent cup run and the Notts County fans clapped us off the pitch at the end of the game.

“They recognised how hard it was for us to get to this stage of the competition.

“But, at the same time, I must give credit to the Aveley fans.

“They were good fun and really up for it.

“Everybody was happy with our away following because they were vocal from the off and excellent.

“I knew, for a club like Aveley, we had sold a lot of tickets.

“The fans deserve credit for being at the game and they were brilliant.

“The FA Trophy has been a massive positive for the football club and the run has been nothing but a bonus.”