Writer: Matt Owen
Date:Sunday October 14 2007
I travelled to Southend, more in hope than belief. In reality I knew we were doomed long before my alarm clock rudely awoke me at some ungodly time in the morning for the long trip to the seaside for an early afternoon kick off.
In has been painfully obvious that we have been short of a decent target man and pacey winger for weeks yet we have plodded on regardless without much success, in hope that we may come good.
The side on display yesterday was quite simply not at the races and looked like they wanted to be anywhere other than on the pitch. Southend are a decent side and were convincing winners on the day but somehow that didn`t make me feel any better.
Of late, an away match generally means defeat for the Alex. I travel in hope that one day it may just all click together, sadly that day looks like sometime off yet. We lacked any real direction and leadership on the day.
League One football is hard and is set to get a lot tougher if we fail to get a grip on reality. Not any point in the 72 minutes that I could bear to watch did I feel that team was likely to score, we simply don`t have a goal threat.
The recipe for success in this league is simple, set your stall out and play the ball up to the big striker and work off the bits and pieces. Without a big man up front that becomes very hard to do and we looked like a doomed side.
Lee Barnard (pictured) huffed and puffed but with no real service he became frustrated and perhaps tried too hard, which you couldn`t say for the rest of the players on show as we plodded to yet another away day defeat.
Ryan Lowe is becoming more and more ineffective as the games pass us by, Barnard needs support and quickly, before he ends up packing his bags and heading back South to the comfort of the Spurs reserve team, Maynard is making good progress and should be fit to resume in a month`s time.
By that time we could find ourselves in a real relegation dog fight, a Bournemouth defeat at home to Swansea has saved us from dropping in to the bottom four but for how much longer will we remain out of the bottom four places?
We started the season expecting to be in the top half at least, now we are lucky to be outside of the bottom four, yes we have been dealt a bit of bad luck but the players we have at our disposal should be doing a hell of lot better than they are at the moment.
The team looks in a sad and sorry state at the moment and it looks set to continue if we don`t bring in new faces and show a bit of fight and spirit. I hope the players watched England`s fantastic win in the Rugby against France last night, a bit of steel and determination like that wouldn`t go amiss in next weekend`s match against Luton at the Alexandra Stadium.
Date:Sunday October 14 2007
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