Date:Wednesday February 26 2014
Our regular blogger, Adam Guest, pours cold water on our playoff hopes, and explains why his girlfriend has more common sense than The Football League.
On Saturday evening I`m not entirely sure what I found more concerning; the fact we`d turned in another miserable home performance, or the fact Dean Smith thought it was anything but that and felt we should have got something out of the game. I don`t, and think we got what our performance warranted at the weekend.
It does leave our playoff push looking more and more bleak, with some remaining optimistic while others think that despite being only one place adrift, the dream has already died for another season. Unusually for me, I find myself in the latter. But before everyone piles in and calls me a doom monger, let me explain.
I`ve gone back and looked at the final League One tables for each of the six seasons since our return to this level. In 2010/11, Bournemouth made the playoffs on 71 points, but in 2008/09, Tranmere missed out despite having 74. In fact, in that time, no side that has finished with 75 points has failed to make the playoffs, so let`s take that as our benchmark.
We`re currently on 47 points with 14 games to go, meaning we need to average exactly two points a game between now and the end of the season in order to get to that target. Given the games we face in the next month, that looks an extremely tall order. Comparatively, Peterborough sit on 52 points having played a game less, meaning they only need 23 points from 15 games, half a point a game less than us. It`s by no means impossible, but given Peterborough`s points per game average is better than that already, it`s looking increasing unlikely.
That doesn`t mean there`s not some fun to be had over the next few weeks, even Saturday had it`s moments. I particularly enjoyed listening to a bloke behind me, who has spent the entire season complaining how we need a striker because Westcarr isn`t good enough to play up front, complaining that the reason we were playing rubbish was because we hadn`t got Westcarr up front. It was the first time this season he`s been right.
I was a bit harsh myself on Michael Ngoo on Saturday. I don`t think he`s a terrible player, I just don`t think he`s very good for us. The fact we improved significantly when he went off (and still failed to create a single goal scoring opportunity from open play) tells you how bad we were prior to that. He actually makes us worse, which is not a good sign for any player.
Finally, as a side issue, I was driving with my other half past Bescot yesterday. "Are you at home on Saturday?" she asked. I explained we were away at Preston, had Wolves at home the following week, and Coventry away in between. "Coventry isn`t far," she commented. "Yes, but they play in Northampton." I corrected her. She looked confused, "That`s f***ing stupid!" she said.
If she can see that, why can`t The Football League?
Date:Wednesday February 26 2014
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