I think we’re all agreed that it’s good to get back to winning ways after the Tamworth shock so let’s instead talk about Fozziegate.
For all Chris Wilder’s ‘ecky thump northern dourness he likes to create a drama like a drag queen with a broken heal. On the face of it, there was absolutely no reason to disrupt the best defensive unit in the league. We have been the best team by a country mile, and the defence has been the best of that team.
On the other hand, Wilder isn’t the first to take a dislike to Foster; both Jim Smith and Darren Patterson dropped him during their reign. What’s more, when there were rumours of Coventry being interested in him a few years ago, nothing came forth. In fact, as good as Foster has been, he’s consistently failed to generate any league club interest at all. Something’s not right there.
When Smith and Patterson got the hump with him, it was early in the season and it seemed that his fortnight in Magaluf had taken an extended toll. Eventually he got in his groove and proved to be one of the best and most consistent players at the club.
And it’s not as if Foster’s performances this season haven’t been first class. But, when push comes to shove, he was ultimately responsible for us drawing and eventually being knocked out by Barrow. And was one of those at fault for the equaliser against Salisbury.
In addition, one of the big problems with the 2006 collapse was the lack of a Plan B. Perhaps Wilder saw that Foster and Creighton were vulnerable when put under pressure. If that got out, the second half of the season could prove very uncomfortable. Perhaps the reconstruction of the back-four is just about changing the dynamic of the team.
What’s more, the squad does have to keep evolving, and for the first time in several years, the squad has reached a point where even the best players must be scrutinised. The likes of Rhodes and Kelly have gone; but there isn’t a name in the first team squad that wouldn’t raise an eyebrow if they were let go. It’s still a big call though.
Few can deny that Mr Wilder deserves our trust. He’s paid to make decisions, and it’s his job that’s on the line if he gets them wrong. Let’s face it; if it were down to our collective wisdom, then we’d be Ebbsfleet, and that’s a fate worse than death.