Remaining fixtures

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by BWFC_Insane » Mon Apr 05, 2021 8:27 pm

officer_dibble wrote:
Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:59 pm
Not a bad game for Maddison to start next time out either you would suspect. I just don’t see Dapo offering goals and Delf has pretty much dropped himself.
Given we can look at every game now as an absolute must win then do we experiment too much? If we are changing things how about Miller in the role Lee fluffed today? Extra scorer on the pitch at home might be useful and lad works hard enough.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by Dave Sutton's barnet » Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:22 am

Morning all. Apologies for lack of updates yesterday but I was off work for once :grin:

I was going to leave the post-"matchday" roundup until after Morecambe-Southend tonight, but as Tango asked, and I'm at a loose end...

I said before the FGR-Bolton game that the next three sets of results would tell us a lot about the promotion shakeup. I was wrong, unless we include "nobody's going unbeaten all season" as a revelation. In those three games:

CAMBRIDGE beat Carlisle and Morecambe and drew at Tranmere
CHELTENHAM lost to Morecambe, beat Tranmere and drew at Grimsby
BOLTON beat FGR, drew with Colchester and lost at Newport
FGR lost to Bolton, Bradford and Salford
MORECAMBE beat Cheltenham and drew with Cambridge
NEWPORT lost to Barrow and beat Bolton.

Cambridge got 7 points, Cheltenham and Bolton 4, Morecambe and Newport 3 (from fewer games), Tranmere 2, FGR 0. Here's the before-and-after table:
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We also saw a lot of the top 7 play each other, and that told us that, er, nobody’s beating everyone. Newport beat Bolton, who beat Forest Green. Cambridge beat Morecambe, who beat Cheltenham, but Cambridge couldn’t beat Tranmere, who lost to Cheltenham.

That might be expected but we also saw a lot of the top 7 play teams they’d be expected to beast, and didn’t. Bolton drew with Colchester, Cheltenham drew with Grimsby, Newport lost to Barrow. Tranmere drew with Mansfield, and in the previous three games they’d also drawn with Grimsby and Colchester.

So let’s play the usual game where we map recent form over remaining fixtures. After a crap Easter we’ve slipped all the way down to fourth in the last-six form table behind Port Vale, Orient and Cambridge. (Cheltenham are 6th, Morecambe 8th, Newport 9th, Tranmere 15th, FGR 23rd). But if that last-six form is repeated, we’ll still finish third.

The longer the form you include, the less effect our crap Easter has – we’re top of the last-10 and last-12 tables and second in the last-8 (to, er, Stevenage). In all four of the tables mapping recent form onto remaining games, we’re going up automatically.
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I’d rather be us than FGR, who are in danger of being caught by a late runner like Orient.
I’d rather be us than Newport, who’ve got three points from their last four games.
I’d rather be us than Tranmere, who have one win in seven.
I’d rather be us than Morecambe, although I do think they’ll push for an auto slot.
I’ll take my hat off to Cambridge, who keep grinding on, and Cheltenham will also have enough to go up.

But that third spot is very much up for grabs. In such an erratic division, any idea that every defeat is doom and every game is a must-win is hyperbole. On all the recent form tables, 78, 77 or even 76 points would be enough – that would require us to get 14, 13 or 12 points, not the 21 on offer. There'll be plenty of surprises yet, but most of them will be elsewhere. It's a good time to be alive and Wandering. Enjoy it. :D

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by officer_dibble » Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:38 am

I keep thinking Morecambe will fall off, they lost their star man in Jan but I think as much of a c*nt that he is they have a very good manager. The game there will go some way to deciding it.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by Dave Sutton's barnet » Tue Apr 06, 2021 12:02 pm

officer_dibble wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:38 am
I keep thinking Morecambe will fall off, they lost their star man in Jan but I think as much of a c*nt that he is they have a very good manager. The game there will go some way to deciding it.
Yeah, curious bunch, and hugely overachieving (I'd tip my hat to that if they weren't such a bunch of scrotes).

In the last 10 games they've won 6 but lost to Cambridge and Newport and been held by FGR (they also lost to Mansfield). That might suggest they're usually not quite good enough against the top teams (they beat Cheltenham with their only shot on target), but that doesn't matter as much if they maximise points against the other 17 or so. That Mansfield loss is their only defeat to teams in the current bottom 10.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by BWFC_Insane » Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:15 pm

Not sure scrapping to get out of league two is much about enjoyment. Though I think it’d be very different if we were actually at these games. This season ranks very low on my enjoyment factor and I think that’s primarily because it’s league two and because we can’t be there.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by Dave Sutton's barnet » Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:28 pm

BWFC_Insane wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:15 pm
Not sure scrapping to get out of league two is much about enjoyment. Though I think it’d be very different if we were actually at these games. This season ranks very low on my enjoyment factor and I think that’s primarily because it’s league two and because we can’t be there.
I'd be intrigued to hear which ones you did enjoy, yer perennially miserable get :mrgreen:

Personally I've enjoyed this one – particularly the last couple of months, obvz – as much as most since the 90s. Perhaps that's about seeing many more of the games than I have since moving to London 25 years ago, although like you I'd rather be at the match. But I think it's also about the intent and the style of football.

However, I also take issue with the idea that the fourth division is somehow despicable. It would have been magnitudes better if we'd been there but IMO it makes a nice change to watch us win at Mansfield rather than get another hammering at Man City or desperately try (and usually fail) to get a 0-0 at Reading.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by Worthy4England » Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:29 pm

BWFC_Insane wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:15 pm
Not sure scrapping to get out of league two is much about enjoyment. Though I think it’d be very different if we were actually at these games. This season ranks very low on my enjoyment factor and I think that’s primarily because it’s league two and because we can’t be there.
If your goal is to be a Prem/Championship team, then you could argue the same about any Division that's neither. Parky's charge out of League 1 was similar, as were our previous season in Div 4 and others in Div 3 / League 1. As it stands, we can only play, compete and try to beat, what's in front of us, both the top two Divisions feel a long way off at the moment.

I'm enjoying this season because, for the first time in a while, it feels like we're making some progress - whether we go up or not. I didn't enjoy it much pre-Christmas, but it's clear Evatt got some backing in January and has used it pretty wisely.

I think looking at the automatics, 1st / 2nd are getting further away. 5 or 7 points on a reducing number of games starts to get a lot trickier. I want us to hit the automatics, but would settle for us winning the play-offs, I'll be a bit disappointed with neither, but when I set my "expectations" in the dark and distant past, I had us down for 8th - 12th (which is where I thought we might be, rather than where I wanted us to be)

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by officer_dibble » Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:58 pm

Surely whatever happens now you have to look at the last few months as being a lot more enjoyable than anything served up in the last ten years? I am somewhat torn, it would be a real shame to miss out on promotion on the last day by not being at the game or at least having been stuck at home and having missed the run in. So is it better to get it right next season and enjoy going to some of these grounds? Accepting that this is Bolton and nothing is ever easy!

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by BWFC_Insane » Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:03 pm

Dave Sutton's barnet wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:28 pm
BWFC_Insane wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:15 pm
Not sure scrapping to get out of league two is much about enjoyment. Though I think it’d be very different if we were actually at these games. This season ranks very low on my enjoyment factor and I think that’s primarily because it’s league two and because we can’t be there.
I'd be intrigued to hear which ones you did enjoy, yer perennially miserable get :mrgreen:

Personally I've enjoyed this one – particularly the last couple of months, obvz – as much as most since the 90s. Perhaps that's about seeing many more of the games than I have since moving to London 25 years ago, although like you I'd rather be at the match. But I think it's also about the intent and the style of football.

However, I also take issue with the idea that the fourth division is somehow despicable. It would have been magnitudes better if we'd been there but IMO it makes a nice change to watch us win at Mansfield rather than get another hammering at Man City or desperately try (and usually fail) to get a 0-0 at Reading.
I mean I could probably do too 5 seasons or something. This one definitely is not one I would want to relive. We’ve underachieved in my view and frankly I don’t see what’s so entertaining about us. Struggle often to create chances and score goals and try to snatch games by passing it sideways and backwards and hope the opposition switch off. It’s not really enjoyable to me. Though the belief I have is it would be ten times better if we were actually there. Partly because I’m sure the players would be spurred on to show more intent and play quicker at times.

I hope I’m wrong but we’ve also got the whiff of nearly men about us. I’m not keen on glorious failure.

My personal view is that you’ve got a split of fans. Those who don’t care what we do so long as we pass the ball. And those who want to see us back in the top divisions before they peg it. I fall into the latter. We’ve an exceptional group of players for this league and really really shouldn’t have any trouble going up. I think we always play with the handbrake on. Whether by design or because we can’t figure how to take it off I don’t know. But when I watch us it’s mainly frustrating. This is the first time in a long time we can genuinely say we’ve got the quality majority of teams in the league would die for. And I fear we will waste it, but I do dearly hope we don’t.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by BWFC_Insane » Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:06 pm

officer_dibble wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:58 pm
Surely whatever happens now you have to look at the last few months as being a lot more enjoyable than anything served up in the last ten years? I am somewhat torn, it would be a real shame to miss out on promotion on the last day by not being at the game or at least having been stuck at home and having missed the run in. So is it better to get it right next season and enjoy going to some of these grounds? Accepting that this is Bolton and nothing is ever easy!
But next season the budget will almost certainly be less. It will be probably still more than enough to win the league with as it’s been this season but it depends on getting it right. Make no mistake it’s easy to get stuck down here. If we can’t go up with the group of players we’ve got now I’m not convinced it would be any easier next season after 6 or 7 of this lot are long gone.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by The_Gun » Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:11 pm

I'm with Worthy - in life it's satisfying to be making progress, and this season it feels as though our club are genuinely making substantial progress. It's exciting to be in the mix for promotion, it's enjoyable to be watching more attacking football, and it's great feeling as though we are building long-term foundations in the background.

I would guess given what's happened in the past couple of months we would all be fairly disappointed if we don't now get promoted. Looking at Harrogate's recent form, we have a great opportunity to get back on track this Saturday.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by BWFC_Insane » Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:15 pm

The_Gun wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:11 pm
I'm with Worthy - in life it's satisfying to be making progress, and this season it feels as though our club are genuinely making substantial progress. It's exciting to be in the mix for promotion, it's enjoyable to be watching more attacking football, and it's great feeling as though we are building long-term foundations in the background.

I would guess given what's happened in the past couple of months we would all be fairly disappointed if we don't now get promoted. Looking at Harrogate's recent form, we have a great opportunity to get back on track this Saturday.
Season by season progress is a myth unless you are either slowly cultivating a crop of outstanding young players. Or by going up the leagues you build more money to sign better players.

Next season would be a new start with a new squad. And therefore to me it doesn’t matter if we don’t go up. You will be starting again. And hoping we get it right.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by LeverEnd » Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:32 pm

I'm not bothered what league we're in as long as we're competitive and having a go.
Rather bounce up and down than finish 15th to 17th every year.
...

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by LeverEnd » Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:41 pm

Also don't get this must win game stuff. We could certainly lose one or even two and still go up automatically. The teams around us are dropping more points than we are. Cambridge and Cheltenham look good for top two after yesterday but third is there for the taking. Repeating out points total from our last 7 could well be enough. Obviously the players have to.have a win every game mentality.
Most weeks Lee would score twice and we'd win or at least draw. Also most weeks Jones' mis-kick against Port Vale would trickle into the keeper's arms and we'd draw not win. This weekend has balanced things up a bit but I still think we're 3rd favourites.
...

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by officer_dibble » Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:51 pm

BWFC_Insane wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:06 pm
officer_dibble wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:58 pm
Surely whatever happens now you have to look at the last few months as being a lot more enjoyable than anything served up in the last ten years? I am somewhat torn, it would be a real shame to miss out on promotion on the last day by not being at the game or at least having been stuck at home and having missed the run in. So is it better to get it right next season and enjoy going to some of these grounds? Accepting that this is Bolton and nothing is ever easy!
But next season the budget will almost certainly be less. It will be probably still more than enough to win the league with as it’s been this season but it depends on getting it right. Make no mistake it’s easy to get stuck down here. If we can’t go up with the group of players we’ve got now I’m not convinced it would be any easier next season after 6 or 7 of this lot are long gone.
Wellll it’s obviously very hypothetical but if we don’t go up I’d be signing some more useful winger/attacking mids and be going from there. And we might do that anyway! For the first time in a long time we’ve got players signed up for next season - Gilks, Santos, Jones, MJ, Cowsarsewithabanjo Kieron Lee, Doyle, Delf... Baptiste will be spot on next season as well at this level.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by irie Cee Bee » Tue Apr 06, 2021 3:01 pm

Well I am enjoying this season. We are winning games and playing some good stuff having been down in the doldrums with non league players and youths. We have certainly risen from the ashes brought on us over the past few years losing game after game with financial problems which almost caused our demise. What is there now not to enjoy!! I had projected playoffs at the start of the season.. now we have a chance of automatics, and I am on the edge of my seat! I love my club no matter what division they are in and I still get a "rush" whenever we win.

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by Worthy4England » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:28 pm

BWFC_Insane wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 2:15 pm
Next season would be a new start with a new squad. And therefore to me it doesn’t matter if we don’t go up. You will be starting again. And hoping we get it right.
I genuinely don't "get" this statement.

6 of our regular starts are on Contract for another season or more . Another 3, I suspect would sign extensions. The only ones we currently don't have much sway over are Dapo and John. Where are you getting "new start/new squad" from?

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by TANGODANCER » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:34 pm

Ian Evatt's "Let's take it out on Harrogate" has me a bit worried. It smacks of an easy game against weak opponents. Form might show it that way, but we know how deceiving form can be and I'd sooner hear "actions speak louder than words" instead and a clinical job on the field and a win any way rather than premature drum banging. Six possible points from our last two games shrank rapidly to an actual one when the time came.

I'd sooner hear a "silence is golden" anthem till the points are in the bag.
Si Deus pro nobis, quis contra nos?

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by Dave Sutton's barnet » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:48 pm

GOAL Morecambe 0-1 SOUTHEND (Dieng 18')

:mrgreen:

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Re: Remaining fixtures

Post by Worthy4England » Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:54 pm

Dave Sutton's barnet wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:48 pm
GOAL Morecambe 0-1 SOUTHEND (Dieng 18')

:mrgreen:
C'mon Sarfend.

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