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Ash Wednesday

Games like Soot 3 Ash 2 are always horrible affairs. Nobody is really that interested in them, the chance for an upset is very real and you do consider yourself unlucky if any of your players hobble off injured..

It’s pointless trying to make too much of the result, the performance etc. We’re through, and even when we went 2-1 down we never really looked in danger. Do you really think that our players – flu or not – are going to put 110% into these sort of games when St Albans is a mere couple of days away?

As it was, it was pretty much routine. We scored through SS, then they scored. Then they scored again. We woke up, scored back thanks to DP and finally took the lead courtesy of Nas Richardson. Who, as sure as day follows night, got injured soon afterwards. I’m sure we’re cursed. Oh, and we hit the woodwork about three times.


Plus points: Well, we won I suppose. The two debutants didn’t look too bad.

Minus points: Flu. Nas going off.

The referee’s a……: *scrabbles through notes*. Nope, can’t find anything recriminating at all on him. Damn.

Them: Ah, I’d forgotten about them. Didn’t they act a bit arsey with us when we first played them? Still got a horrible kit. Good to, er, hear the mad Ash fan still outyelling everyone else. I bet the Ash manager must want to deck him sometimes, especially as he apparently stands behind the dugouts each game.

Point to ponder: Plenty (OK, a couple) of people are trying to make something of the fact that we scraped through against a CCL side last night. Let’s look at the evidence : this was not a full strength team. It was not a team that needed to go at full pelt. In fact, I reckon that we were probably going at 70% yet still looked comfortable. Even though Ash were seriously up for it, there was nothing there to suggest that we couldn’t go up a gear. Perhaps our team is a bit better than what some of our fans think? Look at how many decent teams struggle in early cup rounds….

Truth is stranger than fiction: (1) Did my ears deceive me or was that the Champagne Song being sung last night? Christ, things must have been bad. All that was missing was some anti Charles Koppout material. (2) This was as close to a CCL game as we’ve had since we left the division. We all know deep down it was a shite level, but if you ever wonder what would have happened had we’d stayed there, last night was proof. Our crowds would be around the 600 mark, certainly no more than 1000 at best. The level of play would have slumped, the level of boredom would have skyrocketed. Somehow, the CCL doesn’t seem quite as romantic as before…

Anything else? Interesting to receive in the post a letter from Keith McGuinness, the new Commercial Executive. Especially the relaunch of the Dons Directory (the fact it’s being relaunched seems to say it wasn’t that big a success). It’s the usual upbeat stuff which you would expect from any commercial department, and the appointment is one of the most important ones ever made. It’s a long held belief of mine that commercial operations will have as much influence in the running of AFCW as the DT, and if/when we get in the Conference or even CS, probably more so. That said, I’m worried about the “my efforts will match those of the team” comment. Hopefully not the same effort shown in the first half…

So, was it worth it? The brevity of this report and the amount of caffine needed to write it will answer the question.

In a nutshell: Ash United, Ash Ash United…