Good evening everyone and thanks for coming along to see us take on Fulham in our second home game of the week. Fulham are a fantastic football club - they do things the right way but also have a terrific history and I am sure they will be among the contenders in the Championship this season.
It follows Saturday’s match against QPR which I thought was an entertaining 90 minutes between two well-matched sides. The crucial difference was that for five minutes we lost our concentration and conceded two quick goals Don’t get me wrong, I hate losing any game but over the next two weeks we will do a lot of work on our shape and set pieces and I certainly wouldn’t expect us to be letting in goals like those very often.
We came back well from that setback and Alex Gorrin scored a great goal to make it 2-1. He has settled in very well and will hopefully be a big player for us in midfield this season. There were a number of good performances on Saturday and I thought in the last minutes we were the only side that looked like scoring, which is encouraging and speaks volumes about our general fitness. The lads have worked extremely hard and I haven’t heard too many complaints. Well, a few maybe! But they know that core fitness achieved right now will be a massive part of the months ahead.
We were without four or five players on Saturday. Gavin Whyte sat it out as he has had a busy summer, Rob Hall and Jamie Mackie were not risked and Shandon Baptiste will be back to full training this week, we hope. Two or perhaps three of them will play a part tonight or at Solihull on Saturday. We should have one or two new faces this week as well so I would say we are in decent shape.
Finally, can I just say a thank you to the groundsman and his team for the way the pitch looks. I thought it was as good as I have ever seen it on Saturday, and he tells me it will stay in great condition all season. That will be a massive help for us and hopefully tonight we can again show you the open, entertaining football that we hope will be our style this season.
Enjoy the game.