Friday, 22 September 2017

That Preview Thing: Exeter City

Not for the first time this season, two confident wins were dampened by a loss to follow them up, sending fans into absolute meltdown. It's hilarious to see them think that a narrow defeat is the end of the world. Out of all of our losses this season that was the least disenheartened I felt, we threw everything we could at them, it just wasn't to be.

However, things certainly aren't going to get any easier as league leaders and the only unbeaten side in the division Exeter City come to town. Saying that, we need to prove a point that we are actually a good team and there's no better occasion. Win on Saturday and we're literally capable of anything, in a League Two footballing sense. Anything else is probably a tad too much to ask.



Last Time Out

As I've said, we may have lost but we weren't horrendous at Cambridge United last Saturday. We were undone by two crosses and headers, almost identical to each other. On the plus side we've found our main weakness and hopefully we can sellotape it up to the best of our abilities. (Other sticking products are also available.)

The Duck's volley was something to behold, the clubs official Twitter said that "It could be an own goal, but he won't care!" Personally I don't think that's strictly true, I imagine he would have been ringing up his lawyers given that he banged his chest, turned to the away fans and pointed at the name on the back of his shirt. Fortunately for him, the FA and EFL don't seem to care about League Two enough. He may bit a bit like that but who cares, he's the only striker who is able to score an actual goal currently.



Last Meeting

Coventry City 3-1 Exeter City
Phillips (35', 45+1') Watkins (85')
McQuoid (59')
7th October 2014
Johnstone's Paint Trophy

Almost exactly 3 years ago we drew the Devon side in the old JPT and dispatched of them relatively easily. Aaron Phillips of all people scored a brace with Josh McQuoid sealing the tie before an hour had passed. Meaning Ollie Watkins' late strike was merely a consolation. I believe we were close to Wembley that year but got battered by Bristol City in the area semi final.

Potential Starting XI:

Burge

Grimmer
Willis
McDonald
Stokes

Doyle
Kelly

Jones
Nazon
Vincenti

McNulty

Stuart Beavon might finally leave the side as Marc McNulty is rumoured to be making an early comeback. You can tell that we have a good player on our hands in McNulty, he's just yet to really kick on. Given he was one of the marquee signings you'd expect him to stroll back into the side, a Marc/Duck combination could be lethal. Saying that I wouldn't put it past Robins to drop everyone's favourite Haitian so we can get the most out of Beavon.

People still slate Vincenti but he's picked up considerable amounts recently, plus, if we drop him then the only option we have is Devon Kelly-Evans. That is until Ryan Haynes makes a return. Make no mistake, when I see the Ginger Ronaldo on the team sheet I'm screaming like a little girl who's being taken to Disneyland.

It's worth sticking for the standard back four because despite a sub par collective performance from them last week we still have the best defensive record in the league, and the stats state that the attack is improving as well. Being sixth isn't the end of the world, if we start banging them in like we've been showing we're close to, we should have little to no trouble reisgistering a high finish.

The Opposition

They suffered the pain of a Play Off Final defeat to Blackpool back in May, people would have expected the Devon side to do well this season, but perhaps not as well as they have actually done. With 7 wins and 1 draw from their opening 8 games, The Grecians are 3 points clear at the top of League Two, a very impressive feat at such and early stage.

Not only are they unbeaten for so long, but have won six on the bounce, the only team to take anything away from them as of yet is Swindon Town, who we travel to on Tuesday night. Things really aren't getting any easier with September coming to a close. Realistically points will be hard to come by, but anything would be exceptional.

Prediction

As hard as it may be, I'm able to ignore my natural optimism and say that it's unlikely we're going to come out of this fixture with 3 points. We're fragile and still don't know how good we are, even though we're in sixth position. We haven't managed to find any form of routine, so unfortunately it's likely going to be a loss.

Coventry City 0-1 Exeter City

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