The Diary

Cod Almighty | Diary

After the Lord Mayor's show

15 November 2021

Miss Guest Diary writes: Something which makes Town defeats worse for me is knowing that I will be coming here on a Monday and re-hashing the experience. I could, of course, take a leaf out of BOTB Diary's book – one which received some very positive feedback last week – and simply skate over Town's woes in favour of riffing wittily on the ills of the modern world.

If I were to take that path I'd start with posing the question as to why a price tag has to be attached to the announcement of every new project or initiative. Is it to make us believe it has intrinsic merit? But I'm not going to waste my time with that. As a counsellor I am well aware of the benefits of processing a painful experience, so here goes.

I suspect that Saturday's defeat at Aldershot didn't come as a huge surprise to many Town fans. In recent years it has become our speciality to do well against in-form or "big" teams and struggle against those languishing at the bottom of the table or who have been on a winless run or, as in the case of Aldershot, both. So don't be shocked if we lose to Southend on Friday and beat Boreham Wood next week.

Looked at objectively, though, Town should have beaten Aldershot. Before that game we had won nine and drawn two out of 14 league games, scoring 27 goals and conceding 13. Aldershot had won two and drawn one, scoring 14 and conceding 29 goals. So what went wrong?

Pessimism set in as soon as we saw the team selection. Why, oh why was Crookes left on the bench in favour of Revan? And why play first-year professional Evan Khouri in front of him instead of the more experienced and currently in-form Harry Clifton? It was apparent from the off that we were weak on the left side and so it proved when both Aldershot goals came from mistakes by Revan – who is himself only 18-years old and in his first year as a professional.

This isn't even the Paul Hurst of old, setting the team up not to concede and hoping to score on the break. It was simply unfathomable. I would have liked John Tondeur to ask questions about the team selection afterwards but perhaps his instinct for self-preservation kicked in.

Something which is also new from Hurst is the blaming of players for the defeat. Yes, they are the ones out on the pitch who let in the goals, but he was the person who sent boys out to do a man's job. Badly done, Mr Hurst.

I don't even really begrudge Aldershot the win. Their drummer was phenomenal, keeping up a constant barrage for 90 minutes. We really miss having that in the Pontoon. Also, their fans deserve a bit of happiness as they have to live in the town - one of those places which make Grimsby look glamorous. Like Morecambe but without the sea and the fabulous Midland Hotel. The best Aldershot could manage was a Premier Inn that was inaccessible to pedestrians, which was why at 10 o'clock on Friday night (having travelled by train) I could be found scrambling up a grassy bank behind Tesco in the dark to reach the hotel reception. Could that be a metaphor for Town's current form?

Oh, I almost forgot - there is still a tree on the away terrace, and very picturesque it looked in it's autumn glory. Shame about everything else.