Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Going Through the Motions

I hate this time in the football season.

Don't get me wrong, I'm glad we're not involved in a real relegation scrap like last season when we ultimately got relegated from League One. I'm just not enjoying the lull in news and passion coming from the final games of this year.

It's absolutely nobody's fault that this is the case. Okay, well maybe it's Mark McGhee's, because we're no longer tormented by the fear of dropping out the football-league. But in all seriousness, our current mediocrity is just a byproduct of our good form since Christmas and that means we have nothing to worry about right now. That's a positive thing.

Eliot Richards and Matt Harrold celebrate with Muzzy after his goal against Gillingham
However I watch on at the teams involved at the top end of each league and just wish it was us. Next year it may become a reality, but it seems so far away. With Rovers there always seems to be the notion of 'maybe next year'. Unfortunately, that year never comes around. I'm more confident than ever that we now have things in place to be able to proceed with out hopes of launching a promotion bid, but it doesn't stop this season petering out as another unsuccessful one in our history. The excitement that is currently gripping teams like Crewe, Oxford and Crawley as they work to either achieve either automatic promotion or a place in the play-offs is something I'm envious of. I'm sure fans of other mid-table clubs feel the same jealousy and dream of their side being in that position this time next year. The reality is that of the 10 middle of the road clubs in League Two right now, only 7 of them can occupy a promotion spot or play-off place and that's not factoring in the ambitions of the 4 relegated League One clubs and the momentum of the 2 promoted non-league sides. It'll be a tricky campaign in 2012-2013, so we certainly won't walk it like many felt we would following last pre-season. McGhee and North, alongside the chairman, will have to continue their good work and ensure we are equipped to push on come the start of the next season in August with good work in the transfer market.

Until after our final game against Dagenham when news will switch to who we're retaining, releasing and signing, we'll have to enjoy the intimate nature of very slow news days. We're going through the motions but hopefully, seeing as we have a very winnable run-in, we can notch up a few more wins to encourage supporters and potential transfer targets that we certainly are moving in the right direction.

I'm grateful to Mark McGhee for the fact we're in this mediocre position following the negativity surrounding our club in 2011. Progress is being made and pride has been restored. As the man himself said on Thursday though, the real challenge comes next season.

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