To Dagenham, the title.
Forest Green Rovers didn’t even play well; they weren’t particularly organised and had little to offer up front. There’s not much in it, because there’s a whole raft of teams in the division who are similar, but it’s difficult to think of a team worse; apart from Tamworth who ran around in a bunch like a team of under-7’s.
And we didn’t play that badly; started well for once, passed it around, looked a class above for long periods. We were sucker punched – twice – and the demeanour throughout the team and crowd was of a bad day at the office. Of course, we have no Alamo gear for times like this, apart from Chris Hargreaves, but then the squad wasn’t designed to operate like it currently is. At the start of the season, presumably it was envisaged that Duffy or Basham would be the first choice strikers with Yemi coming on for twenty minutes of mayhem. What’s more, the Kassam is not an ‘Alamo’ type stadium – a bowling alley, cinema and 150 family saloons do not generate enough atmosphere to suck the ball into the net.
All teams suffer a bizarre and barely explainable result at some point in the season. Except, of course, the mid-season slump has eroded any immunity to such anomalies. So just as a chink of light appears, it disappears like a blown out candle.
The up-side is that psychologically it is better for this to happen now than in the last game of the season. Our form is good, five wins in a row would have been some feat and a victory against Kidderminster on Tuesday will make is 5 from 6, which is similar to the form of Dagenham. There’s no doubt in my mind that we are, by some distance, better than any of the likely play-off contenders. As long as confidence and form is with us going into the final act, we’ve got to be confident of negotiating what is a bit of a crocodile pit.
What’s more, the Conference play-off at Wembley rumour is achieving increasing credo; SKY ran an advert last night promoting their upcoming Wembley residency, which included the play-off on the list alongside the Cup Final, FA Trophy, internationals etc.