Even more than ever…
Only a brief(ish) update, as nothing much seemed to happen against Blackpool. But we got the most important result behind a victory anyway.
When you concede five goals in the week, especially when you’re the wrong end of the table, the first thing you do is make sure you don’t hemorrhage any further.
Lest we forget losing 6-2 at Burton then 5-1 at Bradford within the space of a week, in the dying days of the TB era.
Thankfully, GH hasn’t reached anywhere near that stage yet, and I think he must be secretly pleased that things didn’t get any worse in this February From Hell™.
We still can’t win games, or indeed look likely to score. Four goals in the whole of this month so far tells its own story, needless to say.
Hodger’s post match comments about it being in our own hands might be indirectly referring to this, as we’re not going to stay up unless somebody somewhere finds the net.
Yeah yeah, Forss and the January transfer window. You can’t help players being injured to the point they require surgery, and in case you haven’t noticed we haven’t got much of a pot to urinate in right now.
The good thing right now is that there’s now only 11 games left (though you’ll need to double check that yourself) and we’ve mostly got through this month unscathed.
A good March won’t guarantee us safety, but it can go a long way towards it…
I think we’re just looking to limp over the line this campaign, which would at least be in keeping with the other L1 seasons we’ve had.
Next season, with all the stuff surrounding NPL and going home, we’re going to face some pretty harsh home truths regardless.
While I doubt many of the current squad will be here – and who won’t be missed if they do go – the 2020/21 season has to be better for so many reasons.
You’ll have more people going through the gates, for a start, and they’d be right to expect better than the mediocrity we’ve delivered for too long.
That doesn’t just apply to “new” fans either – those watching us right now will see us in our plush(er) new digs and justifiably have more expectations.
A bigger budget doesn’t insulate you from poor management/scouting and recruitment, but it helps a lot more than our current levels of squad funding.
Especially if it’s true that our present budget is being subsidised as it is.
There’s an expectancy that once we’re in NPL we’ll get more transfer budget. Like building our new place has proven though, there’s a lot of assumption there.
AFCW will double in size overnight once we’re back home, perhaps almost literally. You only have to look at the physical size of the new place to realise that we’ll have to employ a lot more people just to run it day-to-day.
That costs money. As does putting more Joe Palmer types to run the club at the higher levels, and not cripple any DTB member with the amount of work they have to do (in their spare time).
NPL will generate funds, at least it will if we do it properly. But how much of those will need to be put into making the club itself function?
There’s long been a sense of make-do-and-mend at AFCW, and that things were getting held off until we moved.
While it’s slowly getting better (employing a CEO with an actual wage that isn’t stuck in the 1970s, the recent employment of a stadium manager, near-universal acceptance that we can’t rely on the DTB and FCB to do everything from now on), we have to start looking like a proper football club more than ever.
We give the impression we’re run on a shoestring, and if we are the club would collapse under its whole weight if we continue to do so. But it also has to be more competitive on the field at the same time.
Especially if we go down this season, because the expectancy for a quick return back to L1 will be pretty high – even (or especially) among hardcore supporters.
While 2020/21 will be a euphoric one for obvious reasons, it won’t last for too long if we continue to be shit on the field of play. There has to be some enjoyment, and not just a constant grind caused by football austerity.
We underestimated the costs of building NPL, which apparently almost sunk the whole project. We can’t do that once it’s up and running…