10:38am Monday 3rd February 2014
By John Light
NOW the story really starts! Welcome giant defender Luke Oliver from Bradford City and we think Morgan Fox from Charlton.
Their signings show the determination and ambition of our club. Their signings complete the change of our team from one of talented but naive players, hesitant and under-achieving into a skilful streetwise side. Now we can really punch our weight.
The left-back position has been a cause of concern since the untimely injury to Chris Stokes. Prince is clearly happier on the right and having seen Binnom- Williams at home and away his displays did not fill me with confidence.
Although improving our defence was still brittle. Hyde scored two goals against us and Chester should have been 2-0 up before we settled down. There have been problems in the air all season, both from set pieces and open play. Luke should help solve them.
We are in good form, and with games in hand anything can happen. We are 10 points behind Gateshead but have four games in hand. If the new confidence and exuberance in the side is maintained, anything can happen. The rest of the season is going to be great fun, whatever happens.
Confidence and exuberance is exactly what Ady Pennock has brought to the club. The nervous, tense approach of Dave Hockaday’s later days is gone. Now we see the ball moved much more quickly and every player works hard and supports each other.
James Norwood as well as talking eloquently about his own game was surely speaking for everyone when he talked about a new confidence in the side, a point he emphasised by referring to the new found ability to play on all sorts of pitches. The interview, reported in this newspaper told of his increased maturity and that goes for the team as well. Now it can really be onwards and upwards.
I hope it is the same for Matty Taylor. His stunning goal for Chester showed how good he can be. Matty is now firmly in the shop window. He will enjoy playing before crowds twice the size of those at the New Lawn and if the goals flow the world is his oyster. He remains our player and as such may return. Good luck Matty.
And of course good luck to Matt Bulman. By far the best kicker from hand of any of the goalkeepers I have seen at FGR, this cheerful, engaging character will be missed. He has made a pragmatic decision and will surely show he has much football left in him.
The way the Reece Styche move was handled reflects credit on everyone concerned.
The departing Reece was warm in his support for the manager who clearly stated he could not stand in the way of anyone wishing to play league football. Quite right too.
The days of soccer slaves have gone and players will always be able to move upwards. The aim must be to get maximum performance when they are here. We can hope for no more. The soccer grapevine will already have spread the news about the support Reece received from the club. This will, in future, encourage players to join us. Any other course of action would have had the reverse effect, now and in the future.
Some people will regard this week’s column as too effusive, too gung ho. Perhaps so, but this is an opinion column and as a fan this is how I and surely many others feel. The chairman has backed the manager and if the latter is the man I think he is, there is no limit to what can be achieved.
Our chairman has, this week, uttered some wise words about the club trust and the supporters club. Praising both groups for all the right reasons he explained that he would like to see them united and taking the club forward together.
No one can possibly disagree with this. There are fine people in both organisations and as we hope for achievements on the pitch these committed supporters could improve on their fine performances if there was an amalgamation.
The Woking cancellation gave me the opportunity to practice my email skills. This column is handwritten on three sheets of foolscap, and my writing is not the neatest.
This presents a challenge to SNJ Ash and his team so they must hope I achieve electronic media mastery. If I do not, then the claim I am a dinosaur will be quite correct. I am making progress because I can now construct a column of this length in three and a half hours.
Oh dear – it looks like I shall have to start again. Lee Fowler has been seen in The Glider Cafe!
© Copyright 2001-2015 Newsquest Media Group