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Roasted Bantam

Complete with a little extra of stuffing.

So, Christmas just got that little bit nicer without yet another home defeat to reflect upon. No (OK, few) mistakes to look back wistfully upon, a lifting – if only temporary – of the gloom and a rare bit of confidence again.

AFCW played well and won. What is this sorcery?

I don’t doubt that some people wrote to Santa asking for a good win. I suspect others wrote to Satan as well, and got a Judas Priest album to play backwards instead. For everyone else, they might be wondering what went right.

Yesterday seemed a mixture of things. With uncharacteristic unanimity, everyone commented on how well we played and how we deserved the win. Even letting the equaliser in soon after the restart didn’t seem to matter this time.

Your editor hates to be a smart arse, but he did have an odd feeling that we’d win yesterday before we kicked off. Perhaps it was the pre-game lack of expectation, especially against a decent Bradford outfit?

Was it the very real threat that the transfer window is open in just over a week’s time? Could be, it’s not just the manager who is fighting for his job in the next month. Or at least it shouldn’t be.

Has there been a realisation that we are actually in relegation trouble, and we’d better buck our fucking ideas up? Maybe, and it’s still tighter than a gnat’s chuff, so we’re going to need a lot more of these wins.

And yes, I note a certain franchised outfit slipping down the table. It might not do your nerves any good, but wouldn’t it be beyond delicious if we stay up on the last day of the season at their expense? It would make an otherwise wank season worth it.

But L1 does look a little bit nicer right now, especially if you consider we have a game in hand.

We have to win that, of course. And we have to be very, very careful that this isn’t our usual one-game-in-five where we look like a proper team. Yesterday will mean nothing if we do our usual against Pompey/Gills/Southend.

After all, we have been here before. Many times, in fact.

Maybe Wigan last week stung us? The way we collapsed was a genuine concern, and one I expect many felt deja vu all over again at 1-1. Mind you, at least we weren’t Oxford yesterday…

I looked at the goals on the Sky Sports website, and I was a bit surprised to find out that we hadn’t won at home since Rotherham in October. That was a similar performance to what I guess yesterday was as well, although the next game after that was Plymouth…

While the second goal was a fuckup by their keeper, and the Bradford strike was a fuckup by Long, it was our opening salvo that should warm the cockles.

A good old fashioned long punt, a bit of pace and a toe-poke home by McDonald. A true Wimbledon goal, majestic in its simplicity and you could see that on the reaction of the crowd afterwards.

What with going back to Plough Lane as well, we’ll be having Mileta making our kits next. Or Spall.

I mentioned the Pilgrims just now. Your editor also caught their goals on SSN, and at least one of their goals was down to the reliable boot down field too. They’re out of the relegation zone because of it.

And doesn’t that prove that the best way to deal with L1 is the old fashioned direct style? Teams aren’t good enough to counter-act it for the whole game, ours included, and if you’re able to mix it up a bit you’ll be comfortably mid table.

Bit like what we did last season, as it goes.

We’ve still got big issues, and one swallow may make your Yuletide holiday and all that, but some of our problems this season has been down to poncy passing shit.

We are not good enough to do that, because other teams are still a bit more agricultural in this division.

Who does it impress anyway, apart from pseudo intellectuals who don’t know nearly as much about football as they think they do? Lump it up, get it in the mixer, and fuck the football purists. It will bring us more success, and is more enjoyable to boot.

Oh, and if you want one more example of how yesterday was a strange one – even Jimmy Soares-Trotter had a good game. Somebody check there weren’t any PEDs in the mince pies…