IAN DYER told Woking’s players that they all had a hand in the dismissal of Darren Sarll from the manager’s chair last week.

Ex-Stevenage and Yeovil Town boss Sarll was fired on November 13, with the Cards mid-table in the Vanarama National League and having been giant-killed by Ramsgate in the Emirates  FA Cup.

But caretaker gaffer Dyer, who was assistant to Sarll, said last Saturday that the  axing came as a big surprise.

Following Woking’s 1-0 home defeat by Oldham Athletic in the league, Dyer said: “It was a surprise to me when it happened. There was a massive sense of disappointment that all of us couldn’t have done more to avoid that situation.

“The board asked me to step into this role in the short term, which I wanted to do to honour my contract and try to help the lads. 

“But it was a frustrating start to the week – I think everyone felt that and everyone was accountable. 

“I said to the players after it happened that everyone’s played a role in this and everyone’s come up short in terms of their own performance and we’re the lucky ones that get to carry on for another week to right those wrongs.

“The players have been really professional once they got over the disappointment and they’ve worked hard to try to put it right and apply themselves in the right way – and they need to continue doing that going forward whatever happens next.”

James Norwood’s 61st-minute goal gave Oldham their success at The Laithwaite Community Stadium.

And the margin of victory might have been bigger had it not been for some fine saves by Woking’s debutant keeper Alexis Andre Jr, who came in for the sick Will Jaaskeleinen.

Dyer said: “Confidence is a big part right now. That’s why we have to support the players and get around them and build back confidence because they’re low. 

“There’s no lack of effort, people are trying to do the right things for the team, but we’re low at the moment as a group.

“We need to keep moving forward and improving. 

“The only way you’re going to turn the corner is by working hard, sticking together and seeing what the next game brings and giving everything you can in the next one. We’ve been depleted for most of the season. Even this week we lost Will Jaaskeleinen through illness, a couple of players literally dragged themselves out of bed this morning who haven’t trained the last couple of days to play and try to contribute to us winning the game. 

“There’s no lack of effort and desire on their part. They need help and at the moment it’s on me to get around them and support them and prepare them as best we can.”

Dennon Lewis had an effort palmed away superly by Oldham keeper Matthew Hudson.

But the Latics hit back and condemned the Cards to their  tenth defeat in 20 league games – and a drop to 17th place in the table – when Norwood shot home following good work by Devarn Green after a corner was not cleared.

Dyer said: “It was disappointing to lose in the manner we did. Not defending the second phase of the set-pieces is really poor from us and it was a moment where we switched off and ultimately it cost us anything out of the game

“We were second best for large parts of it. 

“I tried to pick a team which would have attacking thrust. 

“We started well, there was a couple of good moments for us. Going into half-time Oldham got a grip on the game. 

“They dominated that time going into half-time and we had to defend the box really well to get in with a clean sheet, which we did.

“I changed it at half-time. I made a substitution [Charlie Wakefield coming on] to change the shape which I felt would help the players in terms of looking a bit more solid out of possession and dealing with the full-backs.

“We were in the game without creating much. There were moments we needed to do better with our first pass. 

“We were a bit quick to get rid of the ball when we had more time and that kind of epitomised the second-half performance. We didn’t really get in behind them and get into areas where we were creating good opportunities.

“As the game goes on you hope that if you can defend well and be nice and solid behind the ball you win the game and you can get something out of it.

“I didn’t feel we were opened up a lot but the goal was a poor moment for us and probably sums us up a little bit at the moment in terms of switching off and losing games in that manner with a moment of poor play.

“It’s something we’ve got to learn from quickly and try to put right and address. 

“Oldham came here and were the better side for long spells but the way we lost it was a hard one to take.

“They’re a good side but they took control of the game, some due to our lack of staying on the ball long enough and having enough possession that would’ve allowed us to get up the pitch, and their good play as well.

“The change helped and we had some good moments but not enough.

“We came up short in a lot of areas and it’s probably the story of how it’s been going for the lads over the course of this season.

“We haven’t done enough at the right time to turn draws into wins, and defeats to get a point out of the game.”

Woking: Andre Jr, Moss, Casey, Ince, Taylor, Cuthbert, Akinola (Bradshaw, 73), Grego-Cox (Wakefield, 46), Amond, Lewis (Williams, 76), Pavey. Unused subs: Odusina, Habergham.

Oldham: Hudson, Kitching, Lundstram, Fondop, Ward (Green, 62), Sheron, Raglan, McGahey, Gardner, Freeman, Norwood.

Unused subs: Norman, Shelton, Willoughby, Sutton.