TT OPPOSITION Q&A
Roger Slater discusses his team Wealdstone
Hi Roger, so how would you summarise your season so far?
Blimey. I’m not sure there is a succinct phrase to cover it. A few years ago, we’d dream of getting a Wrexham, a Chesterfield, even a Torquay (that’s not meant to be disparaging btw) as a good cup draw and for the fans, probably away as we love a trip. Here we are after 32 long years back at the top table and (with the exception of you guys so far) we are beating them in League games.
We competed in the early part of the season better than expected I think, picked up good points but still lost a few, and learned from the experience.
In recent weeks (actually it coincides pretty much with Dean Brennan turning down Barnet, but I can’t say if that is significant) we’ve come off the rails a bit. Simply, highs, lows, lots to learn, but we’ll dust ourselves down and we’ll be back, maybe starting around 7-45 Tuesday.
Was it a shock when Dean Brennan left and who will be in charge of the team on Tuesday night?
Yes. It wasn’t that many months ago we won the league, and the football at the start of this season was decent. Five wins on the bounce at this level? What odds would we have got on that….
I think with fans not being allowed in, we’ve become a little distanced to the nuances of the club day to day, so maybe we’d have seen it coming if we had been there.
Stuart Maynard (Deans no2) and Matty Saunders, our Academy Manager are the incumbents. If they right the ship I think it would be tough to move them on, so maybe q3 becomes irrelevant.
Is it hoped a new boss will be hired soon?
As above, they may already be here. Either way I doubt anyone is thinking much past the National League vote at the moment. We might just have appointed new management who in a fortnight will be kicking their heels and sorting the squad for next season.
How’s your recent form been heading into the Torquay game?
Poor. Can’t change the history though, only take control of the future.
What have been the highlights of the season?
Big wins, late comebacks v Sutton to draw 3-3 and Eastleigh in the Trophy to win 4-3. We were two down in about fifteen minutes in both, and three down before we started playing…….and next season is a highlight. I think we will still be a National League side and the anticipation of the 23 away games will keep the fans happy through the summer!
Who are your key players and why?
Each and everyone on their day. They can all be match winners, but honestly, the new management may have a bit of a reshuffle after Saturday, so any I name may be irrelevant – they may not be involved!
What’s your opinion on the NL vote on whether the season should continue?
Tough call. Not enough games played to justify PPG, so the options seem to be finish it or can it. If all three divisions continue, then some funding has to be found and the testing regime put into place. Simply clubs in all three divisions cannot be allowed to fail through lack of income.
It’s not just the gate, it’s the bar, the burgers and everything else coupled with the expense (seems also that the loan scenario may actually break the league rules, but that’s for others to sort out!).
If the North and South are stopped, then the NL will become farcical as clubs cut cost and put out youth players as I’m sure there will with no relegation…
How much have you missed being at games and which streams have been the best you’ve experienced?
Missing the banter, my mates, the awaydays. Football on a screen is soulless – I don’t watch Premier League or most Internationals, as football needs the passion of those fans in the ground.
Regards the streams, my eyes are shot, I have partial hearing on one side, so I can enjoy a bad stream almost as much as a good. I think the willy-waving of we’ve got more cameras than you is all a bit pointless.
One thing that could improve is the research of the home commentators – some are good, others are bloody awful in terms of bias. Perhaps clubs should invite a co-commentator from the opposition to provide a better service…. might encourage a few more away fans to sign up, and that adds to the revenue.
Which opposition teams and players have impressed you most?
The hard bit: you guys are second best I’m afraid. Stockport were a different level at our place. Notts County were decent but we showed a bit of fear there I think. The outsiders would have to be Altrincham. We really did nick the win at home, and lost up there, but their performances were technically good, solid at the back, great movement off the ball and 11 (14) players that knew their job.
And finally what’s your match prediction for Tuesday night?
Just as before. If we return to the “never know when we’re beaten” spirit, there is no one to fear in this division. And again, for the gamblers, BTTS and probably over 2.5 goals. Pick the winner? You call….heads or tails?
FA TROPHY HIGHLIGHTS
TWITTER – @TORQUAYTALK
INSTAGRAM – torquaytalk
SPOTIFY – TT PLAYLIST
Proud Away Sponsor of Kyle Cameron