Colchester United manager Joe Dunne admitted the traffic disruption which led to some of his players arriving late was a factor in his side's 2-0 defeat against Bradford City.
Goals from James Hanson and Kyle Bennett condemned the U's to defeat.
Dunne said: "It was a factor in the game.
"But over the 90 minutes, we still could have probably done more.
"The teamsheet went in at 6.45pm but half of the players on it were missing.
"They got here in a period where we were ten to 15 minutes short in the warm-up and then we were in a bit later and then straight out.
"Even when we were lining up in the tunnel we weren't quite ready and we had to change the warm-up.
"Sometimes it happens and you think, we're going to have to start the game well.
"We've all been there but we didn't start the game well and the kind of set a bit of a tone which we couldn't really recover from.
“We were struggling from the off.
“The whole day started badly, with half of the team stuck in the traffic.
“From the first moment when (Aaron) McLean got in on goal, it set the tone.
“We were chasing the whole night – chasing players to get here and chasing the game."
Dunne admitted his side lacked sharpeness in losing to Bradford, following a punishing run of fixtures in League One.
He said: “It was probably in the run we’re in one game too far for us but we’ll regroup and go again.
“We were off it in terms of energy and zap and I’ve only got a small squad.
“I can’t level any criticism at my team.
“When our energy levels became flat it was a case of us staying in the game and trying to get something from it.
“But you can’t make the mistakes we made and expect anything."
For a full match report and pictures from Colchester’s game with Bradford, see Wednesday’s Daily Gazette.