Onwards, Upwards, Eastwoods and Westwoods.
By Japandy.
Monday 09 Feb 2009 12:46:00
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Onwards, Upwards, Eastwoods and Westwoods.

So McCarthy and his wolves go back to the black country with their tails between their legs, and we are given a result so sweet we can forget about the wintery surroundings for a day or two. This was Coleman's REAL team and it shows what we can look forward to in the months, and hopefully years ahead.

Now our focus switches from our bread and butter existence to our dreams with the FA Cup game drawing closer. I hate cliches but the league is probably more important than the Cup, saying that 5000 plus supporters won't be thinking that come Friday evening.

So how will the team play on Saturday after that moral boosting match? Team spirit must be at an all time high and with some players returning suddenly the air doesn't look so sludgey but more like a picturesque postcard.

The Keeper
Surely Westwood will get the nod even though Coleman likes to give a reserve keeper a run out in the Cup. And now we are back to three keepers with the re-appearance of Dimi. There was a rumour from Jim that the reason his transfer didn't go through was because Dimi's surname is too long for the text message the club uses?
Westwood's heroics brought back grand memories of days gone by and suddenly we are starting to have heroes to worship rather than over-rated and over-paid players we seem to want to boo rather than cheer. If Coleman did chose Marshall or Dimi I don't think it would lessen our team but maybe a few fans wouldn't agree with it.

Defence
Wrighty is on five yellows so picks up a ban for one match and that is sad. I think Henderson's good performance comes about because of Wrighty playing in front of him. That allowed him to get forward, but on Saturday even with Gunna taking over at right back the inexperience may let us down. Some people have said put Mcpake at right back and bring Dann into the centre but that would be totally unfair and unrealistic. Mcpake and Turner were great on Saturday and with Fox on the left a more solid no nonsense defence seems to be the order of the day. A lot has been made of Dann and Fox but for me the find of the season has been Turner. When he has been on the radio he comes across as a very friendly and knowledgeable young man who doesn't need cliches as others do. It was joked after the ManU game that Fergie would be after Turner, well a few years later that may be true. He will play international football one day of that I truly believe.

The midfield
With Gunna returning and maybe to rightback, and with Bell being cup-tied we are forced to change the team around. McKenzie seems the obviuos choice on the left side of midfield but as this is a one-off cup-tie maybe changing the formation would be better. 4-3-3 may be a better option with McKenzie starting up front and just Doyle, the unsung hero of late, Boozy and Henderson the other two. Much is being said about Henderson but its too early to really assess him correctly. Boozy has been a revelation recently and our form is improving as he becomes more settled in the team and this division. I'm really looking forward to seeing him next season. As i have said before having Gunna and Henderson on the right leaves that side of the field very underaged and with such a big game I think its unfair even though they seem capable. that is why I prefer 4-3-3 for this and it gives us extra cover down the flanks.

Up front alongside McKenzie I think Coleman will play Eastwood and Best. We beat Blackburn before with sheer strength of Dele and the speed of Miffy. Well both have gone and Best can cause as much damage as Dele and I think Freddie can be better against the opposition than Clinton. Of course many would disagree with this choice but this is a cup tie so the system shouldn't be the same as for our league games. Also having Clinton come on as the hitman rather than Freddie I believe would have more about it. Clinton won't last 90 minutes and I think he can be more dangerous coming off the bench than Best or Eastwood.

This is our biggest match so far this season and just after our biggest league game of the season. We whooped one northern manager who likes his way and now we face another. Big Sam was one of us and I used to like him as a player. i think we have a better chance of beating a Sam's team than a Hughes's one and looked what happened last season.

Well I think with the number of fans we are taking and the team spirit that now exists we must have a chance, but I think Saturday will be a draw 1-1 with Best finding the net, and then we beat them 2-0 in the replay.

It was a wonderful game and result for us on Saturday now let's take that into this Saturday's cup game and see how far we can go.

©2008 The West Terrace

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