Nightmare flashbacks of 11 second stunner


THINKING of driving up to Altrincham this Saturday starts bringing flashbacks of last year’s trip there when we were beaten by a goal inside the first 11 seconds!

It was dark, chilly and miserable. We were caught cold, we never really looked likely to come back against a side struggling in the table (unlike this year). And to cap it all, I drove off leaving my laptop extension cable there and had to turn round and go back for it.

We asked Billy McEwan what he thought about the early goal after the game and he admitted he was still in the tunnel and hadn’t even seen it!

I had barely looked up from my stopwatch or even had a sip from my Bovril. It was totally surreal.

Whatever happens this Saturday I am fairly certain it will be a better trip than last year’s and a better result than at Barrow last week.

It’s a lovely ideal to go away and take the game to teams, believing the best form of defence to be attack.

But it would seem David Holdsworth will tighten things up this Saturday, drop at least one of his wingers, and concentrate more on keeping the point we start the afternoon with while we suss out Alty’s possible weaknesses on the day and pack the midfield.

And, even though it may see us fall even further behing leaders Oxford United, make no mistake that a point would be a an excellent result away to a much-improved Altrincham who are seven games unbeatn and only two points behind us.

Oxford should beat Grays at home and at least maintain their 10 point lead no matter what.

But they will have a wobble somewhere down the line and someone – hopefully Stags – has to be there waiting to capitalise and put some pressure on them.

It is highly unlikely Stags will win the Conference and thereafter it’s the lottery of the play-offs.

But until it is mathematically certain they can’t catch whoever is in top spot, it is unprofessional not to be positive about chasing them.

For those who feel they may need to head to Altrincham anaesthetised and prepared for anything or for anyone who needs somewhere different to celebrate/commiserate make sure you head for the Robin Hood Beer Festival at Nottingham Castle on Friday or Saturday night.

A world record 640 beers will be on offer in the giant marquees with ciders, perry and country wines plus live music and a comedy tent.

My band played there last year so I was driving gear around and had just two halves all night which was torture.

This year I can sample a few more brews and relax and one, or even three, points at Altrincham could round off a great weekend.


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