HI EVERYONE! Two wins on the road since last we touched base – it’s a happy camp as you can imagine!
We travelled down to Hereford last Friday, then straight onto Bristol on Saturday evening to start to prepare for our Tuesday night encounter with Rovers.
A mini-tour of the South-West, and a very productive one at that.
Over the five days we trained, played two games, went to the movies together to see the new film The Damned United about Brian Clough’s tempestuous 44-day reign at our local rivals Leeds United and generally spent a lot of good quality time together.
We spoke of personal and team ambitions, and what we could do to help support each other to achieve those ambitions.
We also had good ‘craic’ – lots of good-natured banter and plenty of laughs!
That’s always a good sign because it’s a fair indication as to whether the squad is in harmony personality wise, and, I can tell you, it’s a resounding yes!
Another priceless Michael Collins goal ensured we took the three points from a dogged Hereford team, and our first ‘double’ as a management team since Lee took over.
It’s a great knack that Michael’s got, and it puts him on nine goals so far if you add that to the returns of Gary Roberts, Ian Craney and Michael Flynn, we are extremely well represented in the goalscoring charts from midfield. Long may it continue!
To clear our thoughts for the Hereford game, Terry McDermott, Brooky (our top kit man) and I decided to go to Cheltenham racecourse for an early-morning walk.
On the way there, we decided we’d spend Sunday afternoon along at the Bristol Rovers ground watching the Bristol v Worcester rugby union clash, but more importantly seeing what state the pitch would be in at the end of the game because of our match there.
I thought I’d give an old pal of mine from my days with the Welsh Rugby Union and British Lions, Alan Carter, a call to see if he could leave any tickets for us.
So with my trusty mobile phone I scrolled down to ‘Alan’ and rang there and then.
The conservation flowed, who were we playing over the five days, good luck, etc, etc. Then I asked if he could leave some tickets for the rugby. He sounded confused, and said: "Blackie, this is Alan Shearer!"
As it worked out, he couldn’t get the rugby tickets, but maybe he had other things on his mind! Good luck to him back in Geordieland.
As it worked out the pitch at the Memorial Ground was excellent, and so was our application on the night. You get some days when you just know that you can’t lose, and this was one of them.
Even when we went behind, we stayed composed and focused and fully deserved our Danny Cadamarteri-inspired win.
While all the lads contributed to a fine team performance, there were some outstanding individual contributions, (Anthony Pilkington scored and made two super goals) but none shone brighter than Danny on the night. A super showing.
We enjoyed those two wins, and now are in great fettle to take on one of the form teams of the division this Saturday at the Galpharm.
Southend will look to continue their run, but our lads are raring to go!
We look forward to seeing you all tomorrow, and massive thanks to the fans who supported us over the two games in he South-West.Top class!
Quote of the week: "Definition of Sport: A self-inflicted stressful situation" ... but one that’s highly addictive for us all.
Onwards and upwards!