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School is in

After watching Harrow 1 Eton 2, a bastardised quote from Alex Ferguson when he signed Andy Cole springs to mind : we’ve got the players to win it this year. If we don’t, we’ve definitely got the players to win it next year.

In case you’re wondering why I’ve used a misery guts comment, it’s a reflection of the effect Les Battersby and Curley Watts have. Yesterday, when I read that we’d signed the two, I had a bit of a John Fashanu moment. No, we haven’t started giving away dubious penalties against Sheff Utd, I’m referring to when he signed for us to make that extra push towards the top flight.

Last night, I saw a team who could do a Braintree next season. It had the feel of last season where we knew we could just go up a gear. Whether it’s too late for this campaign or not I don’t know : we certainly aren’t going to catch Braintree, unless they collapse quicker than India’s cricketers. The teams above us – on paper anyway – have the games and points advantage. Mind you, a couple do have to play us. And maybe each other.

So, am I saying that we aren’t going to make it this season? Despite the fact that our new signings are giving the collective horn? More or less, yes. I won’t believe we’re in the playoffs until it’s mathematically impossible to dislodge us. And the playoffs themselves, while exciting, are too much of a lottery to predict. One bad game, and it’s back to Maldon Town next season (actually, Maldon isn’t a bad ground, but you get the idea). And although I did say to somebody last night that if we were in the playoffs, we’d win, I didn’t entirely mean it 🙂

Of course, the real other reason I’m writing us off this year is so that I don’t tempt the football gods. I don’t think we’ve ever been in a playoff situation ever, be it as WFC or AFCW. Whether that would work in our favour or not, only time will tell. But one thing I will say – if Wealdstone beat us on Saturday, all this talk and optimism will be a waste of time.

As for last night, ignore the scoreline. It wasn’t even a close contest. Had Wes Daly’s shooting not been as effective as Birmingham City’s defence, had SS been just a little bit more selfish, it would have been about 4-0. The fact that we let a goal in straight after our second still shows the Best Defence In The Leagueâ„¢ has a lot to learn. I don’t know how we’re going to sort out the concentration aspect : perhaps lock our defence in with a randy homosexual prisoner in a Turkish jail? That will sharpen their reflexes up no end.

Needless to say, the new signings get all the attention right now. When RB comes back, he may find it difficult to get back in. Funny what a month can make – when he got injured, some of our less stable fans had to be coaxed down from high buildings. Now? Let’s just say that SS and Les fit together like a married couple. Hopefully without the one-shag-a-year-on-your-birthday thing. Once Les gets fully fit, this partnership could do things. And with Barnesy on the bench, who knows?

Anyway, it’s a win, and even I can’t be miserable at such a thing. Well, maybe… 😉

Plus points: A win. Away. The new guys. Pissing all over them. Looking hungry for the playoffs. Ability to go up a gear.

Minus points: The 71st minute. Wes Daly’s “tackling”.

The referee’s a…..: Did he do anything wrong?

Them: Cheap and nice tasting Guinness, filthy looking minxes as barmaids, quite cosy as well. I ought to come here more often. Last time I saw a function room like they had, it was at Altenburg airport near Leipzig. As for their team, considering they’d lost only one game in six, they really weren’t much at all. They knew they’d got lucky with their goal. And their goalie didn’t half look like Garth Crooks..

Point to ponder: Would we have lost these sort of games a couple of months ago? I remember when we kind of struggled in a PSF against HB, so anyone still convinced that we’ve gone backwards should be suitably ignored.

Truth is stranger than fiction: (1) The police CCTV camera outside the ground. Over-reaction or just a cheap way of filming the game for the end of season DVD? (2) Attendance figure 611. For some reason, when I read that my chin started to itch a lot. Strange, that. (3) Seeing Mr T Walgaar at a ground for the first time in two years. Let’s hope he’s learnt his lesson..

Anything else? Not really. Just to comment again that we do look like we’re getting it right at the business end of the season. One thing is sure, get the valium in, your nerves will be fully tested for the next six weeks.

So, was it worth it: Possibly. Be more worth it if we go up.

In a nutshell: Can I make a joke about shooting an Harrow?