SKY Blues boss Tony Mowbray feels his side deserved to come home from Bury with at least a point as the curse of the former player came back to haunt City at Gigg Lane.
Former City striker Leon Clarke bagged a brace to put Bury 2-0 up with 51 minutes played on Saturday afternoon.
The visitors pulled one goal back thanks to a Reda Johnson header with just under half-an-hour remaining but they were unable to find an equaliser despite testing Bury goalkeeper Robert Lainton.
Mowbray slammed his side for the ease of Clarke’s opener direct from a free kick and he also feels the referee was wrong to award Bury a penalty shortly after the break which allowed Clarke to bag a second.
“The naivety of the first goal is ridiculous really,” said Mowbray. “It’s been 15 years since teams starting doing a cut back, how they didn’t pick up that space, I don’t know.
“The goals were really frustrating. The referee had no intention of giving it but the linesman wanted to put his flag up. The challenge starts ten yards outside the box.
“I’ve watched it back and I think it’s a really poor decision. Those moments change games but I don’t think I could have asked much more from them in the second-half.
“They really went for it near the end and we’ve made plenty of chances. We probably lacked the quality to finish them off but we created a lot more than they did and definitely deserved something.”
Bury fielded no fewer than four former Sky Blues players in the shape of Nathan Cameron, Chris Hussey, Danny Pugh and Clarke, and it was the latter who would be the star of the show.
Hussey and Clarke combined for the opening goal which saw the left-back pick out an unmarked Clarke in the penalty area and he beat Burge with a curling effort by the penalty spot with 19 minutes played.
In-form striker Adam Armstrong had the best opportunity of the half for the visitors when he was put through on goal by Jim O’Brien but his early shot drifted wide of Lainton’s left-hand post.
Six minutes after the break Clarke grabbed his second of the match after Johnson was judged to have brought the former City striker down inside the area and Clarke fired the resultant spot kick under a full stretch Lee Burge.
Mowbray introduced Marcus Tudgay and Marc-Antoine Fortune as the Sky Blues looked to find a way back into the game.
And they did just that on 62 minutes when Johnson beat Lainton with a powerful header to send the travelling support into a frenzy.
Ten minutes later Tudgay saw his close range shot well saved by Lainton and skipper Sam Ricketts cut inside and unleashed a powerful left-footed shot which struck the bar.
But the visitors could not find another breakthrough to the disappointment of Mowbray.
He added: “We put some experience on the pitch to try and change the dynamics of the game, and I think we looked better.
“We were pressing forward for the equaliser and we definitely should have got it. We’ve got to take it on the chin and move on.”