(note to any Crawley Town supporters or that Non League Football Live place who have just discovered this website. I’m not normally this morose. Honest)
By the sound of it, I think I might have gotten the better deal by not going to the Deva Stadium yesterday.
True, I went to Ebbsfleet v Wrexham instead, and although I wasn’t that impressed by either side, both would probably have beaten us yesterday.
Trying to find out how we actually played is a bit like trying to sharpen hen’s teeth. You’ll spend ages trying to find it, and then when you do you’d wish you’d never bothered. At the time of writing, most people who went are being rather coy, and the OS is being quieter than a Franchise fan being asked who they claimed to support before 2002.
So, stab in the dark time….
I get/got the impression that this “performance” was coming a mile off. One feature of this season is that we are very dozy in the first half of games, and yesterday it finally bit us on our oversized arse. You just cannot give away two goals within the first 20 minutes and expect to come back. True, the ever-improving JM got us a lifeline, but quite frankly it seemed we got what we’ve deserved for a long time.
Those there yesterday may liken this to Worcester away last season. I’d also ask them (if they went) if it was like Chelmsford away last season too. The weather outside SW19 Towers right now is certainly reminiscent of Melbourne Park this time last year, and that too was a week before a massive FAC tie. You do fear the worst for Monday week if that’s the case…
It does seem we had a strange lineup though in defence. The new left back, Ashton, must have wondered what he’d got himself into. Finding out that Ben Judge played right back too feels like when we dropped Chris Hussey and put in Micky Haswell on occasions last season. With the same unhilarous consequences. Just looking at the lineup felt wrong.
But then, yesterday had one-of-those-days about it I guess. There were even reports that some of our more brain-dead element were singing about how they hoped Chester would go bust. Bright move, lads. Maybe I’m showing my age here, but if you want to provoke people with a rather sensitive subject, don’t be surprised when they respond. There’s an obvious retort to anything like that we sing, and it’s the one I hope I never hear at a ground ever.
Works both ways of course, and York fans can’t really complain if they receive songs back about David Longhurst after yet another “hilarious” pro-Franchise ditty. Assuming of course those most likely to sing it know who Mr Longhurst was. And no, it’s not particularly big, nor clever, nor anything other than obnoxious behaviour. But then, when was it ever different?
Still, I suppose it’s a distraction from how we played, I guess. The trouble now is that we can’t rely on our away form either. Before the game yesterday, there was a bit of an assumption that we would win simply because we were on the road. It doesn’t work like that of course, and now we really have to start performing at home. I don’t think we’re a bad side, but it’s clear that TB is having to give them half-time rockets far too often.
Repeat this at Millwall, and the police will be protecting our defence for their own safety. What worries me is that once again, we’ll get caught up in the occasion, continue to play the same silly buggers that we have done for too much of this season and we’ll be 3-0 down after about 20 minutes. I could excuse yesterday if it was a comedown from Tuesday, but even the first half of the Crawley game should have seen us down.
No, I don’t know why either. Does TB mentally prepare them enough beforehand? Do our players have an attitude problem? Are we simply not good enough to make that step forward? By that, I mean the top teams wouldn’t have to constantly keep coming from behind (fnar) in the manner we seem to do. I know it’s part of the Wimbledon “mystique” to have heroic comebacks, but you can’t do that too often. Just look at the scorline from yesterday…
Anyway, if I’m feeling charitable, I would put this down to us being distracted with next Monday’s trip to the New Den. As TB himself a couple of seasons ago put it, young players blow hot and cold. This is the Learning Curveâ„¢ after all. And it has taken us up until the last day in October to put in something like this and not get away with it.
Now, can we handle the pressure…?