MARK Bentley was keen to remain upbeat despite Canvey Island being consigned to a narrow 1-0 defeat by Felixstowe & Walton United.

The Gulls, who enjoyed a last-gasp victory at Witham Town last time out, went into the game looking to record back-to-back wins.

Although Felixstowe’s Liam Hillyard scored what proved to be the only goal of the Isthmian North encounter, Bentley felt Canvey deserved at least a share of the spoils.

“We played really well,” said the Gulls boss.

“Credit to our boys and that was definitely the best we have played at home.

“We created numerous chances and passed the ball much better.

“Unfortunately, the ball seemed to be a magnet for their goalkeeper (Jack Spurling).

“We have got to remain positive and there are four games to go.

“If the boys can put that effort in and use the ball similarly in those games then hopefully we will pick some decent points up.”

Canvey made a bright start, with Kane Gilbert and Frankie Merrifield going close inside the opening 10 minutes.

Despite dominating the first half, Felixstowe took the lead in the first minute of injury time as Hillyard beat Zack Littlejohn before firing home.

Felixstowe came close to doubling their advantage two minutes after the restart as Callum Bennett’s free-kick evaded everyone and struck the post.

Spurling denied Gilbert and Ade Cole before brilliantly thwarting Merrifield from point blank range to ensure Canvey could not find a leveller.