Date:Saturday September 29 2007
Someone more famous than me once said: "There are lies, damned lies and statistics." Not that I`d disagree with that, but I`d say it depends on which angle you look at them from.
If you tip your match-mag at an angle of 45°… wait, a little more, a little more… my writings look like Shakespeare - and Matt Connolly looks like Brad Pitt too!
Seven games played, one defeat. Sounds pretty decent eh? Seven games played, one victory? Doesn`t sound so good. Seven games, 14 goals. Good. Seven games, 12 conceded - not so good.
Fine lines my friends, fine lines. We`re dealing with the fine lines between success and failure. The bit in between is called 'a draw` - which we`ve been seeing quite a few of lately. Heck, we`ve got so many draws we could put Ikea out of business!
Despite the fact we`re moving into our second month of the new season, it`s still hard to tell quite where we are. (Well done to the wits that said "14th" or "Colchester" at that point.)
'We wuz robbed by Charlton` but were probably quite pleased to have nicked a point up at Blackpool. Unlucky not to beat Barnsley but fortunate to find Preston in utter disarray.
I don`t think we`re far off though. Better, I think, to be scoring goals for fun and leaking a few than keeping them out but couldn`t score in the Boppa-drome.
Keeping teams out for 90 minutes is much harder than conjuring up one minute of magic in the 90 to grab a goal. Just ask Mark Yeates - he managed it twice in one game in the north-east.
Too many of us will remember those dark days when we couldn`t buy a goal. When our best hope of a goal was Steve Whitton, Mark Sale or a Robbie Reinalt super-sub special. Desperate days indeed.
Goals from everywhere
At the moment we look like scoring goals from everywhere. Yeatesy`s found his groove (though he hides it well in his celebrations!); Kevin Lisbie looks to be brimming with confidence after his goal-rush; Teddy is the dictionary definition of "knows where the goal is"; Clive Platt is a dangerous front-man; Kevin McLeod`s weighed in (pun intended) with goals from the other flank.
Add in Johnnie Jackson`s set-piece deliveries (goals from Connolly and Virgo) and we look in good shape, goals-wise. We all know Doogs has a habit of getting them when they matter most (against Ipswich!) and if George Elokobi doesn`t thunder in a net-buster before the season`s out then I`ll… walk up to him and tell him his tricolour wrist-band "Looks a bit girly."
Given that both Blackpool`s goals came from poorly defended corners; we`ve conceded three penalties and had two men sent-off - it`s not hard to see that the goals against column should be more readily corrected.
Our defence are still getting to know one another. They`re also very young. Doogs hasn`t been a full-time defender for some time, so at 25, Pat Baldwin is the 'senior pro` at the back. Matt Connolly only left his teenage years this month, Big George didn`t leave them long ago and Dean Gerken`s still just 22.
The defending from set-plays can only get better (we hope!) and the defence will tighten up, given time.
So long as we maintain the 'goals for` column, things should start looking up. We`re still just one win away from the play-offs and I`d take that when it comes to seven games to go, rather than seven games gone!
You could make the difference between those fine lines today. Roar the lads on to one more effort, one more lung-busting run, one more tackle… help push them over the line. Up those super white and blues!
Read more from CO2 in the Award Winning Matchday Magazine still priced at just £3, avilable on match days and from the club shop.
Date:Saturday September 29 2007
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