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Grantham Town

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1 Grantham Town on Sat Jan 17 2015, 19:41

Although mathematically possible, today's defeat and its manner makes a play-off challenge looking unrealistic.

The consequence of us being unable, for well-known reasons, to field the same starting eleven all season is now coming home to roost. With so many comings and goings, we are not playing as a team or to our strengths, like we were doing a few seasons ago. Today's match illustrated that perfectly with Chris, for example, first playing at left back, very effectively, then left wing and then centre forward.

Perhaps now's the time to take stock and, as with the on-going ground improvements, plan for the future. With Luke seemingly having played his last game for us, why not give several members of our youth team an extended run ?

Also, we want players who want to play for SFC, rather than use us as a paymaster. We all know that the likes of Leon, Drew and, when fit, Ben will always give their all and I will add Junior also to that list

With today's game, we can't have any complaints against losing to a hard Grantham team, although they weren't anything special. Sound debuts by Luke and, particularly, Tyrone, even though he gave away an unnecessary foul leading to the winning goal, Somehow, I think Dean will be embarrassed by the second ''fluke'' goal in recent weeks !

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2 Re: Grantham Town on Sat Jan 17 2015, 20:27

Hi redpike , I agree with 95% of your thread.the only other things I would add is that we lump the ball to much and bypass our midfield which we have done for twelve months or more.
Also you can't keep changing the players and expect them to gel, it will take time.
Finally I can't blame deano for the goal, when the ball is 40 yards from your goal wide on the left a goalkeeper should not be on his line, he should be around the six yard box ready to anticipate a through ball, which he was.

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3 Re: Grantham Town on Sat Jan 17 2015, 20:49


Have I missed something? Benbow's last game?

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4 Re: Grantham Town on Sat Jan 17 2015, 20:53

Can't add much more to the first two posters comment other than....
Thought all the new players look decent but need a few outings to really settle in.
Add to this the loss of Luke very early on (and looking decidedly glum),Ex after about an hour and Chris looking to be carrying a shoulder problem and we were always up against it today.
Thought Junior took his goal really well.

That said a tad more luck in front of goal and we could have nicked it. Two great chances went begging second half.
Keep going ain't over till it's over !!

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5 Re: Grantham Town on Sat Jan 17 2015, 21:52

Another tough afternoon at the office.  When things are not going your way, they're not going your way, another speculative lob from the touchline sailing into the net in the first 30 seconds and our main goal threat hobbling off 5 minutes later, another disruptive injury early in a match there have been a few of those. Coleman had a poor game afterwards, no doubt thinking about the goal for the rest of the match.

A few unfamilar faces again and not surprisingly we struggled for a lot of the first half, a great equaliser created by Knight who I thought was our best player again (and he covered a few positions today!) and finished by Smikle who also had a good game, half time came at the wrong time as we where getting on top.  Second half we never really got going, the delivery and header for the winner was good, but apart from that Grantham didn't really threaten much, we had a couple of chances but couldn't take them. Geohaghon was clearly struggling just before being withdrawn and I read Morgan-Parker has tonsillitis, more selection headaches coming up!

It's been a long slog this time around and will continue to be I think, I said  on this corresponding saturday last season, we wouldn't make the play offs, I was wrong but it's going to take something remarkable from here.   The amount of injuries, suspensions, players moving on and being moved on has disrupted the campaign entirely, 37 players used so far is a huge amount.  It's no surprise that the best football i've seen us produce where the wins agains Skelmersdale and Kings Lynn when we where able to name the same eleven two weeks running.

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6 Re: Grantham Town on Sun Jan 18 2015, 09:43

Can't see where we are going, style of play is confusing, time for change.but most of you lot think GH is the right man ???? He is the best manager we have ever had but that doesn't mean there isn't better out there.even mick (DA) has packed it in and he has been watching the glassboys for 49yrs.

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7 Re: Grantham Town on Sun Jan 18 2015, 10:37

He's been watching the Glassboys for 49 years, yet this is the season he's packed it in. Really?!

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8 Re: Grantham Town on Sun Jan 18 2015, 18:21

Sry 40

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9 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 09:23

Disappointing defeat. Once again we struggled to beat a team low on quality but high on battling and pressing.

Can't really blame Coleman for the goal but then he went on to have a terrible game, both handling and distribution were poor. Must have knocked his confidence.

Thought the new players did well, although a silly free kick to give away when their guy had played the ball too far in front of him to collect anyway. You can't make that many changes from last week and expect to be cohesive though and Benbow looked totally disinterested from the off. I'm pretty sure that will be his last game for us. His heart wasn't in it.

To make matters even more frustrating, they had an exceedingly annoying management team, including one guy in full 'chav' gear who swore throughout.

Why didn't the stewards do something about it? As he was actually in the stand right next to the dugout (presumably a touchline ban). Ironically it was the Stour fans who were wrongly accused in the Witton game of causing trouble. Their management team really were foul-mouthed, and their manager kept coming almost to the half way line and the linesman and stewards just did nothing.

There must have been 4 or 5 people in yellow jackets and they didn't say a word when their guy was constantly 'effing and blinding'.

Last edited by glassboypaul on Mon Jan 19 2015, 09:27; edited 1 time in total

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10 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 09:27

Also, nobody needs to explain to anyone why they don't come anymore, because it could be for a wide range of reasons.

However I find it hard to believe that this is our worst season for 40 years?! 1999/2000 instantly springs to mind as being an awful season for starters!

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11 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 10:36

Man of the Match voting was;

Junior Smikle 17 votes
Chris Knight 8
Luke Connolly 6
Josh Quanor 2
Reece Hales 1
Exedus Geohaghon 1
Tyrone Williams 1

Winner of the wine was PAUL BROOKES

Thank You to everyone who took part.

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12 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 10:43

After touring all points from Gateshead to Weymouth and Dover to Tiverton in the last 17 years it was good to get back to Amblecote. Stourbridge was one of a few grounds that we endured 13 years of consecutive visits (Sutton Coldfield and Bilston were the others as I remember). Interesting to see things that had changed, the ground seemed tidier apart from behind the open end where not much seemed to have changed, the floodlights seemed a bit brighter/newer? The last time I was there Mark Harbottle missed a penalty for us, we slumped to our first defeat but went on to be runaway Champions with crowds including 2,191 v llkeston and 3,695 v Southport in the FA Trophy. A good example of how quickly things can change as we struggle to get more than 220 through the turnstiles now.

On the game it was a real bonus for us. Our squad has been decimated by a late Autumn budget cut which took more than 50% off our playing budget. We lost the majority of our squad and some excellent players too (many opting though to play lower down where they were being offered crazy money). We were left with the bare bones and a make do and mend problem, what we've achieved since then has been fantastic as we really couldn't see us picking up many points. It's not all been pretty, we don't have that luxury, but the team ethic and work rate has made us all feel immensely proud, as you will have seen on Saturday we only had two substitutes and our primary aim is still to avoid the drop (it's a very tight league and on a projected points table we have secured enough to do that). On top of all of that our centre half was suspended and left back injured so it really was the bare bones.Scoring early always helps and I wouldn't attach any blame to your keeper on that although it did seem to unsettle him as his kicking was pretty awful throughout. I never felt we were that threatened but did rate your No 11 as a really good player and threat, which materialised with his run which set up your equaliser. We all feared the worst and at half time were taking a point. But, as has happened a few times of late, our group surprised us second half with their commitment and effort and the effect it had, the No 11 suddenly seemed to have vanished from the pitch.

Interesting to read that someone thinks this is the worst Stourbridge team they've seen in over 40 years!!! Memories are very selective with football fans but that is ridiculous! For years when we shared the Beazer Homes League your crowds struggled to get above 150 and at one point were often dipping into the two figure mark. Since then of course you've had your cup runs and relative success which has helped hoist your average crowds up to a very respectable level, but things can change quickly in football as we have seen.

Anyway, really interesting to get back to Stourbridge, I'd been keeping an eye on your results in recent seasons as you shared the league with my local team. I'd be interested to know what your fans have made of the NPL so far, not so much in terms of football (there's little difference in quality and fans tend to resort to cliches about northern football being physical and southern football all played on the deck...despite Blyth being one of the best footballing sides I've seen and Chesham I remember as one of the dirtiest). More so in terms of the grounds and fans really...I've always enjoyed the switch to a new league, new towns and experiences, trips to Whitby and Ramsbottom are great trips but I do miss Chippenham!

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13 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 11:05

Pretty sure Devil has knocked it on the head for other reasons,not because he thinks it's the worst team he has seen.

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14 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 13:00

A disappointing defeat to a fairly poor side it has to be said.

I openly admit that I am one fan that feels GH has taken the club as far as he can, this isn't a 'knee jerk' reaction because they have been my feelings for over 18 months. I believe that 90% of the problems we have on the pitch are down to GH, but there is no denying that injuries have hurt us this season. Furthermore we once more had an injury in the first quarter of the game which really doesn't help matters.

For what it's worth I thought the performance was decent, far better than I have seen on many occasions this season. But we look a team full of strangers (due to the many changes) with a number of new players coming in. I thought the 'newbies' did fairly well in truth. However we are so far off what is needed to challenge for a play off place it is untrue. I think Coleman has done better this season, but for me there hasn't been nowhere near enough improvement to warrant a regular first team place. We lack a midfield 'dynamo' in the middle of the park, someone who can get stuck in, win a ball and lay it off easy. I'm sorry but Canavan simply is not good enough as our play maker. I would like to see Fitzpatrick in the middle with Broadhurst (but we do need a Ryan Mahan type of player in there for work rate).

I'm not sure about Exodus at the back. He wins everything in the air but he has no pace whatsoever, if we are to persist with him we need someone quick alongside him. I think Knight can do that job, but due to injuries he was moved from his starting position on Saturday. I'm not sure how much we are paying Exodus, but my own personal feelings are that there are surely better players out there who would cost us much less?

I thought Smikle played well and I gave him my MOTM.

As for Benbow...
When on form he is a cracking striker, indeed one of the best at our level. But injuries have cost us this season, and lets face it, he may never be the same player again? I would be trying to keep him at the club for the rest of the season to see what happens, but if he continues to be injury prone I wouldn't be disappointed to see him go.

I think we should be building a team around Knight (in defence) & Fitzpatrick (midfield) with Smikle (forward).
I would request GH to keep the same team as much as possible now, with the new lads that have come in. Lets see if the team can gel & if we as fans can see a light at the end of tunnel for next season.

I have no confidence in our managerial staff at present, but it doesn't mean to say I don't want them to prove me wrong.

I was walking behind the seated area as the final whistle was blown Saturday. I looked over at GH for a few seconds and could see the utter despair, frustration & anger in his eyes. The guy is hurting at present, and no matter what my thoughts I for one are prepared to give him the rest of the season to see if he can find a formation, a set of players, that can gel in to a team for the future.

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15 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 13:44

Like your comments brockmoor, very well put.
DA has packed it in because of other reasons, I believe.

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16 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 13:51

What would it take for him to come back?

I vote we start a "bring back DA" campaign, along with a "bring back Beast", "bring back Simon" and "bring back Nath" campaign.

Who is with me?

We need to bring back these loyal servants to the club. Without them, where will it all end?

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17 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 17:15

Goodness me if people 'leave' the club for whatever reason then surely that reason is their own?

I haven't been since Boxing Day due to other commitments but I shall return. People have their own free will. Supporters come and go, such is life. It was originally implied that DA stopped coming due to the football on offer, this would now appear to be untrue. Even if it were, so what?

I keep coming back to the same point, this is all about a game of football, now i'm keen to see Stour do well as much as the next man/woman, but it's not life or death, or worthy of falling out over and losing sleep. Lighten up folks!

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18 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 19:00


Who were you cheering on Saturday Aled? You know with your knew found allegiance to Grantham on Twitter Wink

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19 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 19:34

I've always loved Grantham mate, friendly bunch ; )

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20 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 23:54

"For years when we shared the Beazer Homes League your crowds struggled to get above 150 and at one point were often dipping into the two figure mark"

Really? I must have missed them - perhaps you could say when.

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21 Re: Grantham Town on Mon Jan 19 2015, 23:56


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22 Re: Grantham Town on Tue Jan 20 2015, 00:10

Even in the Midland Alliance days, our gates didn't drop below 100. There was one occasion against Barwell in the Alliance in about 2003/04 when we only had 94 but this was due to it clashing with England v Wales that was on at 3pm on a Saturday. Other fixtures were brought forward to avoid the clash but we didn't bother for some reason! That is the only time I can recall a sub-100 crowd, certainly for a league game.

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23 Re: Grantham Town on Tue Jan 20 2015, 00:13

We might have had the occasional low crowd but no way on earth did we get below 150 regularly even in the MFA.

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24 Re: Grantham Town on Tue Jan 20 2015, 11:17

Before Saturday, the 6 previous Stourbridge v Grantham games attracted:

That last game was Mills' championship season and there was quite a big away following that day - certainly more than Saturdy.

In that 1997/98 season your average league crowd was 147, lower than Grantham have ever had in their history and included 95 v Bedworth Utd and 92 v RC Warwick. As recently as 2007/08 your average crowd was only 184.

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25 Re: Grantham Town on Tue Jan 20 2015, 11:31

So there! What a Face


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