In his latest column exclusive to the Warrington Guardian, skipper Mark Roberts takes us inside the Warrington Town dressing room...

I’LL start this week explaining the disappointment the entire squad felt after the defeat to Staybridge at the weekend.

Any loss in football is difficult to accept but having built up some momentum leading into the game, there was a real sense in the dressing room afterwards that we’d produced a level of performance well short of the standards we are capable of.

There’s no point dwelling on the fact that our home form so far this season has not matched our own expectations or the excellent results we’ve produced on the road.

We know it needs to improve and with our next two matches at Cantilever Park, we have the ideal opportunity to make amends.

The first of those fixtures is in the FA Trophy – a competition very close to my heart because it’s given me incredible moments that I’ll treasure for the rest of my life.

Winning at Wembley Stadium in my first year at Stevenage was the day one of my boyhood dreams came true and although I was a losing finalist when I captained the same club 12 months later, I learned as much in triumph as I did in defeat.

Sport has taught me many of life’s most valuable lessons, so whenever I’m faced with any type of setback, I try and use it as motivation to achieve my next goal.

Playing professional football for 18 years was an absolute privilege yet if I’m being completely honest, it wasn’t until I stepped out of that relative bubble that I was able to truly understand the powerful impact sport can have on both my own life and the people around me.

Since signing for Warrington Town, I’ve seen the level of sacrifice my current teammates are willing to make and the dedication they all have for the game that they love to play.

Working full shifts before a Tuesday night under the lights is normality in non-League football, whereas other players head straight to their day job once the final whistle has been blown.

Long days but no lack of commitment – lads juggle everything in their lives yet still find the time, energy and enthusiasm to leave it all out on the field.

The gaffer is quick to remind us that being professional in football is a mindset and not a job title. I couldn’t agree more.

Non-League players might not grab the glory or headlines that Premier League superstars take for granted, but they will always have my ultimate respect.