Friday, August 22, 2014
Nobody ever said it was going to be an easy start for Exeter City, and after the first three league games they have just one point collected from the Portsmouth open game of the campaign, writes Gareth Hughes.
The fact that we only have one goal out of these games, in some ways points to part of the problem.
To be fair though, we all know what the problems are, and with only one signing to bolster a much depleted squad following the shipping out of some of last season’s players, it was always going to hard to understand how City could mount an early season challenge.
Add to that the three really tough league games in the shape of a home game with Portsmouth and two away at Plymouth and Burton.
Last Saturday’s trip to Home Park to face Devon rivals Plymouth was more a trip made in hope rather than belief. The good news was the appearance of Graham Cummings, signed the previous day when the transfer embargo was lifted. The less than palatable news is that the Grecians were generally out played, and sent packing back up the A38 with a three goal whipping.
After the game Paul Tisdale said: “They (Argyle) trumped us. They played their game and we didn’t play our game. They deserved their goals and they deserved their win. We have thrown away that opportunity to play our game. We played poorly.”
So, in summary then, after a poor first half for City, Pompey led 2-0 and, despite a better showing in the second, Portsmouth, to the delight of their fans, scored a third.
The next tough game was on Tuesday evening away at Burton who had collected maximum points from their first two games, beating Oxford United and Dagenham. Once again, City were toothless in attack and the goal conceded just before half-time sealed their fate.
In goal Christy Pym was great value and new boy Cummings as a lone striker battled well.
As in the Plymouth game David Wheeler, when on as a substitute, made an impact. With a squad thin on numbers and experience there was no choice of strikers as Tom Nichols was not in the line up or on the bench.
Hopefully he will be fit for Saturday when York City are the visitors to St James Park. With three draws to their name the Minsters find themselves with three points and 17th in the fledgling league table. The Grecians are 20th place courtesy of the fact that the four team below them who have lost all their opening games. To say this is a ‘six pointer’ is an overstatement but a win would boost our young team’s confidence and provide a platform for moving forward. A truism is that in a game where size of playing budget leads to success on the pitch, Exeter will struggle to match the team with bigger budgets. In our favour however we have a team of promising young players who have come through the ranks together. The hope is that as they settle into the rigours of League Two football, they will improve in confidence and begin to impose themselves and start scoring goals. Come on you Reds!
The East Devon Grecians are always very keen to hear from those interested in learning more about us, and hopefully becoming a member. Check out our website http://www.eastdevongrecians.com/ or phone 01395 515552.