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Pre Cheltenham thoughts

Bit of a rush job, although I wrote a fair amount this morning. I’m not there tomorrow (at Brighton), or indeed at Northampton (bloody Bournemouth again. At least they’re playing Lids) but a couple of musings…

– Our strikeforce has improved this afternoon/evening with the news that Charlie Sheringham has joined Salisbury on loan. Rather tellingly, they don’t mention how long he’s going to be there… Since I wrote that, our OS mentions that’s he’s there for a month. Not once, but twice – as almost to make a point he hasn’t gone forever.

I’m sure we’ll get We have got the “it’ll be a great opportunity for him to get game time” tokenism that these sort of deals usually provide, which basically means that we won’t see him again for much longer.

After all, if we’re struggling up top, as effective as a hamster trying to fuck an elephant up the arse, and we’re letting one of our strikers go and it hasn’t made things worse?

Although somebody will point out that Midson still won’t start…

TBH, we won’t miss Teddy’s son if we never see him again. He was the classic symptom of how NA has got it so wrong up front this season, which could still drag us into a totally un-necessary relegation scrap.

And he’s also proof of what happens when you’re so wedded to a “system” that you sign poor players because they fit into it, and not because they’re any good.

I would hope NA will hold his hands up and admit himself what everyone else twigged a long time ago. Sheringham scored at Newport, but you can’t see him ever making it with us. Or indeed, with anyone else…

– All this should be a backdrop for tomorrow. Now would be a good time to get a couple of wins on the board. A very good time at that. The stats recently say it all, with just one win in the last nine of them.

And given that 3/4 wins will most likely do it for this campaign, that really hasn’t been good enough.

Cheltenham is going to be one of those odd easily-winnable-yet-easily-losable ones, which is going to seriously piss people off if we end up with zero points. Especially as we’ll be going into the Northampton game where losing that one really shouldn’t be an option.

The most important two games in a row this season? Possibly, although the mood suggests that it isn’t. To give us credit, we have come off the back of the York horror show with two very credible draws, and a (hopefully) newly found verve in our play, if the Burton second half was to go by.

Even getting one point is better than none whatsoever, and it’s made this week a lot lest antsy than it could have been. We’ve also been helped by results this week as well, and with the exception of t’Stanley nobody took advantage of their game in hand well enough.

It’s waaaaaay too tight in our position for comfort, needless to say, and which is why we will continue to look bullshit merchants if we continue to talk a good game and fail to get points.

Obviously, we are good enough to be comfortably mid-table. We aren’t comfortable at all, and the post-mortem for this season will be pretty blunt as to why, but we still have enough points on the board and games to go to ensure a nice, relaxing April.

Can we finally stop arsing about and take it…?

– NA told the players this week to express themselves a bit more. Leaving aside that getting them to think without parental supervision is dangerous, one wonders how they would go about that.

Maybe our back line will form a freeform experimental jazz ensemble before the game? Perhaps Danny Hylton could take up sculpting, to show the art community what he does during AFCW games?

And perhaps our approach to forward play generally is some kind of avant-garde performance, making a statement against aggression in the world by retreating peacefully whenever we get into opposition territory?

Apparently, NA has told Dons Player that we’ve been working on our forward play this week. So obviously the HAFSOG movement has not gone un-noticed. Now that Sheringham has gone, it’s going to be harder to justify not starting Midson and Wyke, arguably our most effective pairing.

No, they’re not Sutton and Shearer, but they’re the best of a piss-poor bunch. And while we’re obviously going to have to do major surgery in the summer up front, let’s get through the last nine games intact first off.

Actually, I hope us going more attacking works really well. Not just because we need the wins, but because I don’t want NA to be given any excuse to go back to the soul-crushing negativity approach.

You could put up with that for a while at the best of times, but it’s not like it’s even been that effective. For too many times this season, we’ve had the worst of both worlds – a stifling system that strangles attacking and entertainment, but ends up putting us a goal down anyway. If we must go behind every game, at least let’s be trying to stuff the opposition in the process…

– Finally, we get to welcome back Banjo “Byron” Harrison to KM. Like Sheringham, his departure raised the quality of our strikeforce, so it will be inevitable he’ll get a hat-trick.

Actually, would you welcome him in an AFCW shirt again? Or have we been so poor that even he would be better than what we’ve had. Although on this line of logic, I draw the line at wanting the return of Drewe Broughton…