BRIDGWATER Town boss Dave Pearse is hoping matches like Saturday's 5-1 derby defeat to Taunton Town will represent an important learning curve for his young side.

The Robins took the lead against their high-flying opponents, but went into the break 4-1 down after conceding three goals in six minutes at the end of the first half.

"It's frustrating to collapse again, like last week, as for 40 minutes we played very well," Pearse said.

"At 1-1 or even 2-1 down we would have been right in the game at half time, but going in 4-1 down just left us with far too much to do in the second half.

"The second goal was yards offside but we didn't react to that and crumbled, which you can't afford to do against a side like Taunton.

"I don't think the scoreline flattered them, as when you get the ball in the box as much as they did then it's hard for an inexperienced defence to deal with.

"Credit to Taunton, they are a strong, physical side and their game plan works."

It was perhaps a fitting way for Bridgwater to mark their final home game of a difficult season, but Pearse is hopeful the Robins can bounce back next year.

"It's not going to be easy by any means, but hopefully playing teams like Taunton and Salisbury will be a good experience for our lads, who can look at it and learn from what those players are doing that we currently are not," Pearse said.

"There are only one or two players here with any experience, which makes life difficult, but they are decisions which previous managers have made so that's what we have to deal with going forward."

Bridgwater's next match is at Paulton on Monday, with a new manager set to be announced this week.