Managers Notes – February 2020

Our Town United

Dan Brownlie remained seemingly enthusiastic about his Basingstoke Town side’s performance despite the narrow loss versus Paulton Rovers FC, after a wind assisted goal crept in at the near post being the only difference between the two sides. 

Speaking to BTFC Media team the boss was happy with the overall performance “Whilst the result is disappointing, we can take plenty of positives from the way in which we played. There were some very good individual performances but the more pleasing aspect was the collective one.”

With replays of the goal doing the rounds on social media; there’s a strong claim that the goal should have even stood:

“Having seen their goal back, there’s a strong argument for a foul on Evo and to add further frustration it looks like handball. That’s football – I just hope it evens out over the season. We still had chances to get back in the game, but it wasn’t to be.” 

“We made it difficult for them, there’s no doubt about that. You could see by their reaction after the game that they’d got away with a result. Paulton are a good side; particularly going forward but we never let them settle. I’ve heard people say that they were not as good as they’d imagined – but I think thats an insult into how we went about them; we didn’t allow them to play. I‘m never satisfied when it’s a loss; make no mistake, however we’ve competed against a top five side and stopped them from playing whilst creating plenty of our own chances. For that, there’s improvement and we’re heading in the right direction. We just have to be more clinical and ruthless at grinding out results.”

Looking ahead to the quick turnaround with two games in three days; the boss gives an insight into some of the injury concerns:

“Harrison got’s a sore hamstring and Monday will probably come around too soon. Wrighty’s been working hard to get himself back in the fold – he saw a specialist on Friday afternoon to give him the best chance, but realistically we are still a week or two away from getting him back in. With Brad’s departure, Alfie Saunders loan coming to an end and Riccardo unavailable we are a little thinner than I’d like to be but I’ve every confidence in the abilities of this squad.

“Mikey Davis will be back with us tomorrow, he’s got some valuable game time over at Whitchurch where he’s done well – its important that when players are called upon they are up to speed. Riccardo’s absence is a disappointing one, as its a game we’d pin pointed to utilise him as he caused them problems last time we were down there. He’s been a little unlucky of late with Hallahan and Brad doing so well, combined with the change in shape; I’ve not called upon out and out wingers. We’re working hard with Ricco; he’s a good lad, we love him – we just need to work on his end product, he knows that. There’s a real rawness to him which I like, we just have to ensure he’s consistently effective. I’ve no doubt we’ll get him back to his best as he’s got the professionalism to do so.”

“Melksham are the in-form team at the moment; so it’s going to be one of our bigger tests this season. We’re going to have to be at our best and nobody can afford hide – we can’t carry anyone. It was a proper battle down there last time and I’m expecting much of the same. We’ve just got to worry about our own performance and trust that’s enough to get something out of the game.”

Basingstoke Town travel to Melksham tomorrow evening in a 7.45pm kick off.