Paul Tisdale was left to rue a shocking first half at Burton Albion in which he felt Exeter City let the game slip far too easily.
The Grecians found themselves trailing 3-0 at the interval after a half in which they again barely created a decent goalscoring chance.
Burton added a fourth before goals from Guillem Bauza and Scot Bennett raised hopes of an unlikely comeback, but even then, the Grecians could not raise their game and set up a grandstand finish.
"My overall feeling is that we let the game get away from us very quickly and it was too much to claw back," Tisdale said after City's 4-2 defeat.
"There were not too many poor performances out on the pitch. The players haven't let me down at all this season and they didn't again today, so it is on to the next game, which is Port Vale.
"I am not frustrated. Once the game got away from us, it was very simple. We were having to start the second half having to try and pull the game back and, unlikely as it may seem, you may just do it. The game was being stretched away from us very quickly.
"I don't think there was a lack of concentration, I just think we didn't read the game well enough. Once the game had changed by their goals, the players should have played a different game. The players are responsible for their performance in the first half and, at 1-0 or 2-0, I don't think they made the right decisions. But they didn't let me down for concentration or for effort."
There were a few positives to take from the game, notably Exeter's two consolation goals. With the npower League Two table so tight, goal difference could be vital come the end of April, so instead of an eight-goal swing in Burton's favour, which it was after an hour, it was only four come full-time.
The other positive was a return to action for Matt Oakley and John O'Flynn, while Bauza notched his first goal in 12 appearances for City and his first since the end of August.
"We said at half-time that if we can't get a point out of the game, then at least get something positive from it and Matt and John both played some minutes on the pitch and that was a boost and a positive element from the game," Tisdale said.
"Guillem got 45 minutes, but every player's individual assessment I will keep to myself. I am not going to go through the team because they are all culpable, every player that plays.
"Whether it is Arron Davies, who played the first half, or Guillem, they are all culpable for their jobs and I am not going to go into much detail about their individual performance."
Tisdale concluded: "They deserved to win because they played better than us and executed their performance better.
"I don't think we were that bad and deserved to concede four goals, but I don't think we did enough to win the game either.
"The scoreline will always dictate how you feel after the game and the major factor today was that we conceded goals, which we haven't done recently, as you know.
"It's all about the next game and we will move on to the next game. I have highlighted one or two things that we should have done better today, but it is in isolation."