“Relief? Well, now let us see. Y’know, we don’t have any idea what that means. We know what you think it means, Mr Westley. To us, it’s just a made up word. A manager’s word, so young fellas like can wear a suit and a tie, and have a job…” The interpretation of just one word can be varied, don’t you think? First we were humbled, now we’re relieved? We aren’t too sure about that in the context of relegation.
Of course, it could be seen as relieving one’s self – as if this season has been some kind of piss take? Some of the defending and the wasteful shooting can be questioned, sure – but what about some of the tactics? Some of the team selections? Or even substitutions? That would mean taking some of the blame, some of the responsibility for our results since the start of the season. A time we could score three in a game.
“I honestly think the group when I arrived, that started of the season as it did and has taken us through the year hasn’t had enough of the characteristics that were required.”
And that group is more GW’s than anyone else’s, so how much can you still point fingers at the previous regime on that front. We make it nearly 40 lads to wear the Boro’ shirt – not including the likes of Jason Goodliffe who made the bench. Take out the youth team fellas who found themselves in a tough situation, and we’ll call it around 34-35. Whatever that figure is, we reckon there’s about 10 players in that who were signed by Gary Smith. That’d be two-thirds signed since the summer in some form or another.
We’re all going have our opinions on the matter, and there’s ours. And maybe it’s sort of relieving that the almost inevitable has been confirmed. It’s in that interpretation, y’see.
And so our last home match in League One and it’s against Walsall. A dash of anger here and a splash of frustration there, all served up on a bed of irrelevance. It would’ve been a difficult job to motivate the team as it was, without pinning the tail of blame on them all in your pre-match presser. So, how will we get on against the Saddlers this weekend? It’s hard to tell, but we’re not exactly expecting many points from the last two games.
“Relief? It’s just a bullshit word.“
[expand title=”WE’VE MET BEFORE…”]
|19 Oct 2013||A||Sky Bet League One||1-2|
|01 Jan 2013||A||npower League One||0-1|
|18 Sep 2012||H||npower League One||3-1|
|24 Mar 2012||A||npower League One||1-1|
|26 Nov 2011||H||npower League One||0-0|
[expand title=”REFEREE WATCH”]
Our last home game in League One will be refereed by Graham Horwood, a man we’ve met two times before. Both occasions have been happier ones too; a 3-2 victory over at St Albans City back in 2006 and a 1-0 win at Wycombe Wanderers in 2010. It’s been nothing out of the normal for Mr Horwood this season, with a reasonable card count and only one goalless draw – between Peterborough United and Walsall.
• This season for Graham Horwood:
Games: 25 — Yellow: 79 (3.16pg), Red: 2
• Our record under Graham Horwood:
P2 W2 D0 L0 F4 A2 – Yellow: 7, Red 1
[expand title=”FIFA 14 VERDICT”]
Day; Wedgbury, Jones, Hartley, Freeman; Akins, Mousinho, Smith, Doughty; Burrow, Banvo
With both Rohdell Gordon and Fejiri Okenabirhie not in the latest update available to us, we adopted our best guessing face and went with the starting eleven above. It couldn’t get much worse right now, so deep breath and away we went. Walsall had the better chances of the first half, with Chris Day making two good saves; at the other end, Anderson Banvo made a nuisance of himself but to little effect in the area.
Into the second half and things were still going the way of the visitors, with our last-ditch defending not making us feel too comfortable. However, a lucky break came our way with 12 minutes left as Jordan Burrow robbed the defender and fired home. Boro’ had minutes to last – and then Jimmy Smith was sent off for a second bookable offence with five to go. He had initially been booked after just three minutes of the game.
And then to add insult to injury, Nicky Featherstone equalised in stoppage time. Ah…
FT: Stevenage 1-1 Walsall
(Burrow 78′; Featherstone 90′)
[expand title=”BOOKIE BASHING”]
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Walsall come into this without a win in four league games, so would be ripe for the taking if you weren’t the sort of team to go 10 fixtures without coming out on top. Unfortunately for us, we are that team and the 7/5 on a Walsall victory is a tempter. Goals haven’t been much of a feature for either side this season, with nearly a third of Walsall’s games ending 1-1 (11/2). Our most common result is still a 1-0 defeat (15/2).
More than two-thirds of the Saddlers’ results this season have apparently seen fewer than 2.5 goals, compared to 55 per cent of ours. It’s 5/6 if logic prevails, or it’s 19/20 if we see a trousers-down, tackle-out goalfest. We can’t see it happening, however; we’re averaging 1.18 on our own turf and they average 1.18 on their travels. For Both Teams Not To Score, it’s maybe worth the Evens we’re being quoted. But now all bets are off, no?
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