Rob Page: Northampton Town boss apologises for 'men against girls' comment
Northampton Town manager Rob Page has apologised for labelling his side's 5-0 thrashing by Bristol Rovers as "men against girls".
The 42-year-old made the comment after watching his side lose for the ninth time in 11 games in all competitions.
"I immediately realised that this comment was totally unacceptable," said Page after a "difficult afternoon".
"No offence was meant by it and I apologise wholeheartedly if any was caused."
Page made five changes to his starting line-up because of illness, injury and international duty, but saw Ellis Harrison score four times for Rovers in Saturday's League One match.
Afterwards, Page told BBC Radio Northampton: "People are knocking on my door, saying they deserve a chance and when you do, do your talking out there.
"Actions speak louder than words. There was a couple giving that. It was men against girls, not boys.
"That was embarrassing. My staff and players feel like we've let the football club and the supporters down."
Page took charge of the Cobblers in the summer after Chris Wilder, having led Northampton to the League Two title, moved to Sheffield United.
A 31-match unbeaten run stretched between seasons and they were in the play-off places in late October, but their poor run of form has seen them drop to 16th in the table.
The Welshman insisted he was not a "quitter" in the face of job pressure and said there was "no excuses" for his side's performance at the Memorial Stadium.
"I've got to apologise to the supporters. They didn't deserve that today. It's not acceptable, I'm a proud man and that's a hard one to take," said Page.