A quick pictorial for you. What’s the difference between what you see below..
… and AFCW right now?
There’s less draws in the picture above.
Seriously, we’ve had four tied games in a row, and after Suburb of Wimbledon 1 Suburb of Horsham 1 I feel a mixture of relief and disappointment. Apparently, we were much better second half than we were against Ebbsfleet, although after reading some of the reports of that particular game, that’s not necessarily saying much.
Tonight felt strange though – before the game started, I believed we’ve lost a bit of the mental and physical verve we had. Afterwards, I’m now convinced we have. Don’t get me wrong – not for the first time we came back in the second half and might – I said might – have even won it. But we’re having to dig in yet again and claw back a result that maybe we shouldn’t have got. And you can’t do that every game.
So, what? As said in the last paragraph, tonight certainly had a tinge of oddness in the air. Maybe it was the amount of traffic about beforehand, or just one of those nights you get every so often. Whatever it was, it just seemed inevitable that they would go and get a goal from their free kick.Â Be honest, how many of you predicted that it would be a tight defeat by 10pm this evening?
I don’t know what it was in the first half, but something was lacking. And, not for the first time, that something missing was suddenly found in the second half. We actually looked like scoring, even if it took all that time for us to eventually do so. And somebody was claiming it was another effort from A Divot, who we’ve now got back off loan from Furruk.
IF we could play in the first half like we do in the second half. IF we could learn to fucking shoot instead of adhering to the Perfect Goal Manual. IF we could just take chances, IF IF IF. IF my uncle had a clunge he’d be my auntie. You get the idea. I think tonight is yet another lesson in this rather big learning curve that we expected this season to be…
Plus points: We didn’t lose. Second half. Good crossing from Hussey and Duncan at the end. Kennedy. Monty. DK and Moore trying as hard as ever.
Minus points: We didn’t win. First half. Luke Garrard clearly isn’t first choice these days. Crap passing at times.
The referee’s a…: Apparently not as bad as Saturday’s lino, but still made you believe he bought his refereeing qualification at Poundland.
Them: They worked hard enough and were what I would call a typical Conference side. Thankfully, Calum Willock managed to allay your editor’s worst bouts of paranoia by not scoring a goal – thereby disproving one of the main unwritten rules about returning players. To be totally honest, I’m glad we didn’t sign him in the end.
Decent enough turnout from them, though considering the distance one would have hoped that would be the case. Kind of heard them, though I did hear the “You’ve got no history” chant towards us. Bit insulting really – who do they think we are? Chelski?
As an aside, I suppose I have a soft spot for Crawley, as I used to cover a fair few of their evening matches for the (now defunct) midweek NLP edition when I was learning the ropes as a journo. Always liked going there anyway. Bit of a lesson for us here too – by the time I stopped covering them they were about to make the big decision to go full time, having been within touching distance of the playoffs (this was the Francis Vines era). Which they duly did. Result? They’ve ended up with Steve “Cunt” Evans…
Point to ponder: Do you get the feeling I’m starting to have that this season is starting to turn into the one we should have had last season? Granted, I was very disappointed with the standard of the BSS in the end, yet even so the BSP isn’t the step too far I thought it would be. This game was another classic example – a bit more drive, and perhaps less wearyness and this would have been three points. I guess you can learn pretty quickly the pace of a division and what to expect. But the little things like taking opportunities, that seems a lot harder to grasp…
Truth is stranger than fiction: (1) Why did DK throw his boots into the crowd at the end? Symbolic? Or has he simply got a new boot deal? Anything is possible – hell, even Adidas and Puma have called a truce this week. (2) Chris Coleman reportedly in the crowd. Probably to sign Danny Kedwell, Sam Hatton and Chris Hussey (cue rumour mill). Wonder if he’s got any midfielders we could have in return? (3) JM didn’t even come on. And to be honest, if Monty improves the way he’s shown in glimspes, this might be a regular thing.
Anything else? Yeah. You know I said it was a strange night? Well,Â looks like it wasn’t just us. Who could have predicted Wrexham stuffing Luton 3-0? Or Oxford going to Mansfield and losing? And, for good measure, about seven draws too.
This all said, I think the division is settling down a bit, and we’re proving ourselves to be a decent mid-table side. Perhaps not playoff material, but we are five points behind second place with a game in hand. And this in our crappy spell. Somehow though, you expect us to be playing Crawley again next season…
So, was it worth it? Yeah, it was all right I suppose.
In a nutshell: What does a win feel like? Or a loss?
And finally: I’m not at the game again on Saturday. This time, I’m off to Sahfend v Oldham, so I’m on the scrounge even more than usual for some kind soul(s) to do a match report for me. I rather liked the idea of two people doing it – gives some interesting perspectives, not to mention making this place look more updated than it really is – so I’ll open the offers up now. Come on, it is a bloody home game…