Overriding considerations (excl ref's. mistakes & weather) for me was the impression I had that the whole affair was a tad subdued. Tactically, they for me were not exactly what I envisaged. First, I thought we matched them wholesale. The Boycott analogy, the midfield corridor of uncertainty - we matched them. Kudos, to Lee and staff for that acknowledgment. The way they took hold of the second half, through central midfield remined me of a Billericay or a League U-23 outfit. I thought the whole thing smacked of a stalemate. Top sides find a way. Billers probed down the flank. Weymouth 2nd 45, high line distribution. Benchmark and all that. Annoying for me, strong-point for them, delivery in the box. Crying out loud, the number of corners 2nd 45. I don't think the scoreline necessarily flattered them. Hit the bar twice, totally in command in the middle. Quicker, more nimble, more direct. Very Billericay. Took the ball off us with ease.
The lad Howe for impressed. Best I've seen from Solomon. Tough conditions for the lad. Again, these games, evolution, an identity. Nos 4 & 8 pivitol in our composition - one carted off, one position, the key question for me today. I don't advocate therefore we were anywhere near our 'A' game. I thought we missed a Corks or Big Dave kind of lad. Someone to distribute and help us advance. We tried to play through the middle against other top sides and fell short. That word 'identity' re-surfaces on days like today in my mind.
A tad unfair some may feel, I do believe that's the difference. Hence-forth these top sides have more options and a settled variety at their disposal. Grappling with the concept of containment more than that of exerting our own dominance. Style-wise is the thought against top sides. How we stand-up in terms of what we have to offer.
We all have our own thoughts on that one. Personally, I am getting quite repetitive. New broom and all that. All these top sides have undergone development stages. We're no different. Cracking set of lads. The foundation is in. I would imagine Lee has garnered a lot of personal thoughts with regards to implementing his own blueprint.
If that's the case, then I'm happy. Onto Wednesday - another interesting encounter.
Re: Taunton or Truro Mark II
50 shades of last season. 3-1 up last time. Half their side consists of ex-Truro lads. I had a look at Truro's life in the league above. Timeline and interaction between both clubs - even down to the First Team Coach moving over.
I think, potentially, Taunton could be movers. Powerful, good on crosses. A trait that's synonymous with the top sides. Despite their home record, you do get the sense you can get at them. Interesting we go against them again a couple of weeks. Another good test. That's a real gallant shift from the lads tonight. A real solid all round showing with regard to absentees. Lee's got a good set of lads behind him. The attitude and application must have been on display throughout. It should stand them in good stead. Well done.
Re: Taunton or Truro Mark II
You've nailed it in your last paragraph there, Rob.
First half, after going a goal behind we were magnificent. A change of shape, Howe and Olalerin excellent out wide. 3-1 didn't flatter us at all.
After the break the expected bombardment materialised, a little more subtle than last season's visit to Taunton but still seeking out their big number 9 at the far post. We gave everything, could have nicked it. Hope the Taunton keeper has a rough night's sleep trying to get Eddie Oshodi sent off, the welcome from Taunton given the rain absolute chalk and cheese from Poole.
Enormous test tonight, think we did enough to pass it.
As an aside...
Obviously Hendon do a lot for mental health causes and I've written in various places before about how watching Hendon has helped me.
The last couple of weeks have been a real daily battle, a real grind to the point of, well, realising just how easy it would be to take an easy and quick option.
If ever anyone needed a true realisation of how football can help, and in particular how Hendon can help then tonight is a case in point.
The result was excellent, but completely secondary to the camaradie, the fellowship with other fans. I almost jacked today off in favour of hiding under a tree for a number of hours (genuinely), but I think I spoke to every Hendon fan that attended this evening, to the management team, Faye, Billy, some of the players and felt worthy. It's something I struggle with, that whole feeling of validation because it goes against everything running through my head.
Even sharing some MH experiences with other supporters, knowing their struggles are different, bigger perhaps, but that there's an opportunity to slightly open up without shame, that's just massive.
Win, lose, draw tonight, my experience was bigger than the result.
This is a real roundabout way of saying it, but thank you to Hendon, thank you to everyone who came to the game tonight and spent a few minutes talking to me, thank you to those that weren't there tonight but I know are at the end of a message or pint.
To misquote Shakespeare, 'Once more back from the breach...'
Re: As an aside...
so glad that the game last night was such a help ,a big well done to everyone ,can relate to many of your thoughts that is why I thanked you and everyone at Hendon ,kind people who without knowing help in the same way an old boy from the island,hope to see you at Walton couldn't make taunton weather and getting back at five put us off....keep it going …...john the smaller and older of the two.isle of wight greens