By Rab Laverty
So here we are now as we approach Halloween, the traditional half term break and I thought it may be time to have my tuppence worth on our season so far.
We started with a fairly comfortable win over a poor Wolves side on the first day, where Neil’s new signings to be fair looked the part. Although we looked as if we are still badly lacking some decent firepower up front I have to say I was happy enough with both performance and result, as relegated teams usually still have a reasonably strong set up especially with parachute payments etc.
Then we had a reality check with a bit of a lesson in soccer from a fairly competent Blackpool side who, to be honest, could have won about 4 or 5 as we chased shadows for 90 minutes.
The question from this game for me, was a problem we have had for a couple of seasons now, why do we struggle on a Tuesday night? Consider some of the shockers from last season, especially the horror showing against a poor Forest team and I am at a loss to explain why we struggle. Maybe our poor players don’t like playing on the dark nights, either way though we need to start getting our consistency sorted out and great results on a Saturday need to be followed up on our midweek travels. Two of our three losses this season have been on a Tuesday night with exceptions being a win over a poor Peterborough and an excellent performance against a good, strong Everton side. We need to produce
this sort of game against all our opposition and get out of the championship this year, hopefully with the backing of our prospective new owners (still unsure about this one) in the January transfer window this will become a reality.
Hopefully we will start on a good winning run this TUESDAY v Charlton and with another very winnable game on Saturday v Birmingham, come the end of next weekend we could be sitting in a very useful position in the league, which if I’m to be honest I would have been very happy with at the start of the campaign.
On passing I would like to mention Friday evening’s game v Sheff Wed. I don’t want to say too much about the clown in the Kirkland incident, as to do so only gives idiots like that valuable publicity, other than he let 5,500 passionate, loyal fans right down so if you know him boot him square on the balls before the police get to him. Our away fans have been incredible all season so far, and we don’t need this sort of thing to blight our proud club. I’m sure our prospective new owners were glowing with pride at Hillsborough, NOT. As a support we need to get away from all this nonsense about the likes of Munich, Dave Jones past and other events, I couldn’t care less about any other club and don’t want them to justify chants about Christopher Loftus and Kevin Speight murder because of our chanting. I will chant about my team and support them passionately but let’s get above all that and grow up as a support. In closing this paragraph the Kirkland moron ruined what was a good point on a difficult night which has kept us close to the pack, hopefully it won’t end up with us having points deducted.
I am pleased with the transfer dealings of Neil Warnock and in this old warhorse we have, I feel, the right man in position to get us to the promised land. I love having Paddy Kenny in between the sticks and I know at times he can drop a clanger or two, but I feel that a decent keeper can probably earn a team 6-9 points a season and in Paddy I believe we have that. I still feel that we are lacking in defence, a good strong pair of full backs is a necessity and also a good 25-30 goals a season centre forward, but we are close to a decent side and I am reasonably content that we can get players in to do a job during January. It will be interesting to see how Ryan Hall gets on and hopefully he will get a chance to show what he can do.
So for my midterm report I have decided to give a big thumbs up to Neil Warnock and the boys. We would all have accepted being in the pack of leaders, especially with the summer we had due to Captain Birds eye and the will he sell/ won’t he scenario so let’s all march on together and cheer the team to promotion in the right way. MOT