The Saddlers suffered a 3-0 defeat against Southend last night on the back of our 2-0 defeat against Luton – the first time this season we have suffered back to back defeats but the message is simple…DON’T PANIC.
Social Media went into meltdown last night following the defeat and in true social media style if you win you are winning the league, if you lose then you are going down. There needs to be a middle ground. This side were capable of a promotion push two weeks ago and now being described by a few as “Whitney-esque” – lets have a bit of realism.
As we sit here this morning the Saddlers currently find ourselves three points off the play-offs with a game in hand. Had someone offered us this position on the Friday morning before the new season I think we would have all snatched your hands off. However the current run of form is a worry but I believe its a blip, the same blip many sides will have as the season progresses – its how we bounce back from this blip will decide whether we are top ten or bottom ten material.
Keates surprised many last night by making four changes to the side which didn’t turn up against Luton. Out went Nicky Devlin, Liam Kinsella, Zeli Ismail and Andy Cook, in came Kane Wilson, Isaiah Osbourne, Kieron Morris and Connor Ronan. Lining up in a 4-1-4-1 formation. Given the players he has at his disposal its clear to see that 4-4-2 has to be the formation for Keates. Ferrier on his own up top didn’t work, Ronan (whatever position he was meant to be playing) didn’t work.
Fact of the matter is this side is currently bereft of any confidence. The smiles on Insta have disappeared, the “banter” between team-mates has disappeared and the after match fist pumps to the fans has disappeared. Sooner we get out of this rut the better.
Even during our inform spell the writing was on the wall for the lack of goals, only now when you are suffering defeats does it come to the forefront. The Saddlers front line have scored just one goal in the past six games – you are not going to be challenging at the right end of the league if you cannot score goals. However last night we had our chances just like we did earlier on in the season but they just didn’t drop in for us. Had Ginnelly found the back of the net with his header or had Luke Leahy or Jon Guthrie got on the end of the corner we could be in a different position this morning – you have to take those chances at any level you play at.
We now have three home games on the spin.
Should we continue to struggle for goals and points after those three games then the worry will grow stronger…for now lets just put the last few weeks behind us and go into Saturday’s game with Wycombe with confidence that we can win and get back amongst the chasing pack!