Andrew Abbott's Blog

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Work. The curse of the drinking classes.

Apologies if you’re getting up for work in the morning. I’m sorry I really am. Not as sorry as if I were going mind you.
We’ve occasionally discussed opening the office in between Christmas and the New Year but it’s my contention that the only calls we’d get would be from time wasters and troublemakers. It’s not my decision but I hope things will stay as they are and a nice long holiday, the only one apart from Easter where work is closed and no possibility of those “Mr so and so came to see you. He wasn’t very pleased you were off” type conversations.
It’s been really blissful mooching round the house not getting any of those jobs done. I could get used to this. It’s like being retired except there’s a pay cheque at the end of the month.

Don’t suppose there’s any possibility I’ve won the lottery? No, thought not.

Friday, 27 December 2013

The secret of success; Take Kerr.

You know what it’s like, you’re doing ok when along comes a new boss. Try as you might your face doesn’t fit any more. Usually there’s only one winner, the boss and all of a sudden the door looks a lot closer than it did.

That’s what happened to Scott Kerr at Lincoln. Twice. First Chris Sutton didn’t like the look of him but the diminutive midfielder rolled up his sleeves and fought his way back into the team. Then, this being Lincoln City, soon enough along came another manager, Steve Tilson and it was the same old story. Did he jump or was he pushed? Bit of both possibly and off Scott went, to York. Very picturesque and, you know, a better class of supporter, very pleasant.

Kerr enthused some Lincoln City fans, others agreed with the managers but he went on to enjoy success, in the form of promotion and frustration with a bad injury. Football being football he was released by York and duly arrived in Cleethorpes, home of Grimsby Town.

Now it’s often the case that players return to haunt their old team and in the Imps case, usually. Even Kyle Perry managed to do it, in his case even before he’d left officially. And so we come to the Boxing Day clash between a slipping Lincoln City and a renewed Grimsby Town. Played before a large crowd most City fans, it’s safe to say, were expecting a pasting and it seemed that was to be as Mariners raced to a two goal lead in the first half.

I’m often amused by some of the comments made by my fellow fans on the radio and on the message boards, the manager’s playing the wrong formation, this is wrong, that’s wrong. The truth of the matter is often simple. Can you make the most of your limited resources? In the case of Conference football the limitation is skill, or rather lack of it. The best chance of scoring a goal at the level we are at is often a set piece, be it a free kick, corner or even a throw in. The difference between poor results and good ones is often a goal or two nicked from a situation where you can have all of your resources in the right place and deliver the right ball.

It would be churlish to deny Mariners are having a good season, picking up plenty of points and it would be over optimistic to think that City are going to have a barnstorming second half of the season. It usually happens that you will end up roughly where you are at Christmas and yet there was not a lot of difference between the two sides. In fact the main difference was that Grimsby had a player who could deliver free kicks into the right area, Scott Kerr, and it does help if you also have the ability to stick the ball in the net from that good delivery. This being Lincoln City they were ably assisted by having almost no defenders to get in their way. Kerr went off at half time and that was that of Mariners as an attacking force and a neutral observer would have been hard put to identify which team were battling for the play offs and who were the strugglers, football’s often like that.

Quite where that leaves us I really wouldn’t know. It wouldn’t surprise me if City were to get something at Blundell Park and it wouldn’t surprise me if Grimsby were to deliver that pasting. I did actually manage to enjoy this Boxing Day encounter, I thought Mariners fans were in good voice and I thought our fans were too. There was plenty to admire. Some reckless tackling saw yellow cards for City, which will displease the manager and an even more reckless lunge from Sheriden resulted in a red which will definitely displease the manager. It’s bad enough having your main playmaker, Newton, out but when a player comes in who has barely featured this season, but is also capable of delivering a surprise or two rules himself out for three games you know it’s really not your day.

Merry Christmas.