Another excellent read from Simon ‘Sprout` Phillips
Hi there and welcome to one of the final three (or maybe less) something for the weekends of the current season. I am sure if Vital offer up a decent contract and bonus scheme I may return next season and maybe with a few random bits and bobs across the summer; perhaps a Euro 2012 England Expects (bugger all) column?
I had a hectic week last week and various things to deal with (resulting in lack of column) and by the Saturday was looking forward to my football fix, with the Liverpool v Everton Semi and then the Gas. As a Liverpool follower, I was certainly happy as I bounced my way onto the terrace, which one of the ladies I stand with was happy about as her husband is a Liverpool fan and she can`t bear to go home if Liverpool lose. However as the game started and dragged on, I lost some of that enthusiasm and felt like going to sleep as Rovers and Burton took part in the classic end of season, mid-table, nothing to play for game.
That was until Muzzy woke half the ground up with his great strike to put us one up. The Second was certainly livelier than the minutes preceding Muzzy`s goal as we ended up racking up a further six goals which rounded of a decent afternoon bar the solitary blip of Burton`s goal. What I am about to write might sound odd, but as good as the result was though I don`t think we played that well. It`s not that we didn`t play well because we did, just that in the end it was all a bit easy as Burton seemed to capitulate. Its takes nothing away though from the players though and hopefully showed us a glimpse of what we could expect next season. It was good to see Elliot Richards net his first professional hat-trick and showing great strikers instincts as well as Matt Harrold netting twice (albeit one from the spot). Obviously all areas of the team are available to be strengthened, but I wouldn`t be disappointed to see Matt and Elliot start next season as I think they could forge a decent partnership.
Switching focus briefly towards the UWE stadium project, the deadline for comments and letters has been extended until the end of the month, so still time for anyone to register their support. There was shall we say, a slight concern raised by Hewlett Packard with regards to the project with a long letter of objection submitted which certainly made a few people sit up and probably think “Here we go again”. Thankfully Friday morning Nick Higgs appeared on Radio Bristol and it appears many of the issues have been smoothed over with HP and there are just a few operation details to be sorted. It seems that their ‘objection` was mainly down to a lack of consultation and this resolution is certainly good news as someone like HP would be an awkward customer to deal with as we moved down the planning process.
With just three games left to go this season this Saturday sees us travel to Port Vale for our penultimate away game and it would be good to see us carry on from last week and rack up another good win. It was good to see Wayne Brown get a run out against Burton and I am sure he will get a few more minutes this weekend to show Mark McGhee what he has to offer. Wayne has had his injury problems and also not been selected by previous managers but on the occasion he has played he has shown glimpses of what he is capable of. I like him as a player and think he could be the creative spark we may need in what has been a midfield that has been lacking quite often this season. Whether this last few games are enough to impress Mr McGhee who knows. I am sure he has a good idea of his early plans for next season in terms of the current squad and personally as I have said previously I would like to see a couple of youngsters involved, especially in the final home game which I think might encourage a few people to come along coupled with the excellent £10 (£5 concessions) offer. When you hear how good some of the youngsters are supposed to be it would be nice to see a little something of them in what are really no pressure games.
If you are heading to the game Saturday, I hope the journey is worth and if you aren`t enjoy your weekend and I hope that the changeable weather decides to bestow us all with some sunshine
Simon ‘Sprout` Phillips