2011 Starts With A Bang
The start to 2011 couldn't be any better for Alex fans with two wins, two clean sheets and two good performances over bank holiday weekend, leaving us on the cusp of the play-offs.
After an enforced three week break Saturday's visit from Northampton seemed to be the perfect New Year's Day hangover cure. Whilst we didn't go to town, or in fact get out of second gear, it was a more than comfortable performance and a well deserved two-nil win.
Donaldson and Miller had no trouble shaking off any cobwebs as they ran the Northampton defence ragged, it was only a series of poor finishes from Donaldson that denied us an a goal haul. Thankfully the former York man eventually pounced before Shaun Miller showed him how it's done with a contender for goal of the season.
Taking that form from a
Cobblers lacklustre Northampton side to a Shrewsbury side who hadn't lost a home game this season was the worry; but when we're rocking, there isn't a side that can touch us in this division.
Yes, Donaldson and Miller spurned a couple of chances any striker should be putting away but when Miller slotted home at the far post with 20 minutes left on the clock it was thoroughly deserved for the Railwaymen. We were on top of or game as we gave Shrewsbury a lesson on passing the ball and, without wishing to over do it, we were sublime at times.
Securing six points in three days puts us in 8th, one point off the play-off spots with the third best goal difference in the league and a game in hand. So, get four points from our next two games and we are guaranteed to be in the top 7 come a week on Tuesday.
Those next two games are by no means the easiest however. Wycombe on Saturday, they currently sit in 3rd, and then Torquay in 11th but who've been around the play-off spots all season. With Port Vale also a week on Saturday it makes for possibly the trickiest week of the season so far.
There's no need to go booking hotels for the play-off final just yet but the past weekend has at least produced two top quality performances and shown we're a match for anyone in this league. It's now a matter of the players believing in that without getting too confident.