Date:Saturday May 16 2015
Our regular blogger, Adam Guest, finally posts the blog he wrote last week.
I must confess, going into the final game of the season I was a little bit concerned at what it might mean if we were to have beaten Bristol City. Going into the game, victory could have seen us finish as high as 9th with a total of 62 points. Personally I think that would have flattered us, and it would also have led to months of rhetoric about how much progress we`d made over the last 12 months having secured a top half finish and made our maiden Wembley appearance. It would have definitely been a glass half full view, and would have seen the reasonably successful final 10% of the season papering over the dross that made up much of the preceding 90%.
As it happens, a 14th place finish feels about right and, while I`d have rather avoided an embarrassing 8-2 defeat, I am at least thankful for two things. 1) Bristol City didn`t turn it on like that in the JPT final and humiliate us Wembley, and 2) Any danger of anyone getting ideas above their station of just where we stand in terms of progress has been well and truly nipped in the bud. This defeat should, and will, hurt all summer and will hopefully result in everyone working extra hard next season to ensure such shenanigans are never repeated.
What may help us during the close season are all the financial windfalls we`ve received over the last 12 months. Obviously we`ve had the JPT run and the additional £75k from the Troy Deeney deal following Watford`s promotion, but there`s also the potential of more Will Grigg money should Brentford choose to flog him in the summer. It could become quite lucrative for us and will hopefully see us be more competitive in our summer transfer dealings than we have in the past.
It would also be helpful if we could keep Richard O`Donnell. I had a feeling the writing was on the wall about 6 weeks ago when he didn`t accept my friend request on Facebook despite having 79 friends in common with me, but joking aside he really needs to consider his next move before walking away from WS1. I`m struggling to think of a single player who has left the club of his own accord under Dean Smith who has gone on to a better career. They may have bigger bank balances now, but Andy Butler moved to Sheffield United and within months was palmed off to Doncaster via a brief return to us. Febian Brandy also attempted Sheffield United and has taken in Rotherham and Crewe since and is now back on the scrapheap. Ditto for Milan Lalkovic who has been told he can leave Barnsley today despite still having a year left on his contract. Even the aforementioned Will Grigg has spent all his time since he left the Banks`s knocking around in League One. Jamie Paterson has made a career in the Championship, but that was a sale of the clubs choosing rather than the player believing the grass was greener.
O`Donnell will obviously make the best decision for him and his family, and if he can secure a deal as number 1 of a Championship club he will leave with the best wishes of all true Saddlers. But there`s enough examples above for him to seriously consider staying put.
The Guest Blog will return in pre-season. Have a good summer.
Date:Saturday May 16 2015
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