By Simon ‘Sprout` Phillips
Hi and welcome to the latest something for the weekend. As I sit down to write it`s been one of those long, dragging weeks, mind frazzled and I think, what am I going to say this time. So if you haven`t stopped reading yet, here goes.
Fortunately or not depending on your viewpoint, I was unable to attend last Saturday`s away game as I was attending my girlfriends Gran`s 85th birthday party. I probably could have gone to Rovers, but best to keep the future in-laws sweet if I have to marry into the family, plus after the Tuesday game against Southend I wasn`t exactly thinking this is a game that I can`t miss. Well I did miss something and it was only a bloody home win! Following the game via Twitter certainly didn`t paint a great picture. After taking an early lead I was pleased enough but certainly not getting carried away with our propensity (word of the week) to concede goals and we duly delivered. We took the lead again and I was starting to feel more confident, but still wary and the Chesterfield equaliser came before we took the lead with ten minutes left and just willing us to hold on.
The reports I hear of the game didn`t exactly paint a great picture from a Rovers performance standpoint, but first and foremost the win was what mattered. What I did hear and was pleased to see following was that we didn`t appear to give up and kept fighting until the end. A quality that seemed to be lacking in the previous game and something we need to show every time out.
This Saturday sees us travel to Rochdale where we really, really must capitalise and build on the positive result last week if we are really going to break free from the lower reaches of the table. When I did (read could afford/was allowed) to go away, Rochdale was one of my favourite trips outside of Leyton Orient as number one. A friendly, welcoming club with a lovely chippy right outside and a nice boozer just down the road. There was just never that feeling that you were trouble or not wanted.
Now as I type, I am tired and struggling to think what I can write. The season right now feels in a state of flux. Waiting for something to happen and to actually turn a corner and put some back to back wins together. We have been poor at time and on a few occasions have shown that we do have something about us that on our day we can play some good stuff. Outside of the action on the pitch we are waiting for the planning meeting regarding the Sainsbury`s on The Memorial Ground site, which has just been put back again which I don`t feel helps that atmosphere or mood around the club. It feels like there is an uneasy calm as we await the biggest decision that the club has ever waited for. If the sums are good and the permissions granted then maybe that dream of a new stadium can be a reality. Who knows what a positive decision for Sainsbury`s will mean for our season. It might just mean that a pressure is eased and we suddenly as supporters have a sense of hope again that the club has a brighter future. Right now at least in myself, I feel a little out of sorts with what is going on, on and off of the pitch with the Rovers, anxious and nervous about the season and where the club is heading.
I think really that is all I have this week, and whatever you are up to this weekend I hope you have a good one. I need to do some Christmas shopping which inevitably means I will end up buying something for myself. At least I have the Girlfriends present sorted if nothing else. Have a good one everybody and I hope I will feel better and have plenty of positives to talk about next week.
Simon ‘Sprout` Phillips