Marcus Braddock takes his weekly look back and forward at all things Shrewsb
The view back over the last seven days was a little cloudy for Paul Hurst and his team with a stamina busting defeat in the capital and a difficult to take draw at home to Doncaster. I think we saw what the cup game took out of the team during the Doncaster game. We looked to be relatively comfortable at 2-0 up but when Doncaster inevitably countered, maybe a little fatigue crept in and we weren't quite as switched on as we may have been with a little more space between the games.
However, there are some silver linings to focus upon and the first may appear a little defeatist but we're out of the F.A. Cup. I know it's wonderful to be involved and have the attention of the nation for a moment but with 89 minutes gone at the Olympic Stadium I just wanted to see a winner from either side, rather than see us play another half an hour.
It may not have the prestige of the F.A. Cup but the Checkatrade Trophy is our best chance of silverware this season and we're not too many games away from Wembley. We're the best placed team still in the competition and with a home draw, we have a great chance to progress to the last four. We're probably at the point of the competition where it's taken particularly seriously by everyone in it so it should be a good night under the lights at Montgomery Waters Meadow. At £5 for adults, £1 for everyone else and a 7pm kick off, it's a great value night out but wrap up warm!
The weekend sees the first team travel to Portsmouth who have almost as good a home record as we do and I can see a really challenging afternoon for us. But with so many good performances away from home this season, we stand a chance wherever we go. We took our game to West Ham in one of the best stadiums in the country and we can do the same at one of the oldest on Saturday.
Another positive to take from Saturday was the performance of our new full-backs, Max Lowe and Luke Hendrie. It was Hendrie's debut and I thought it was an impressive one, I don't recall any unforced errors and he seems to be developing an understanding with the players around him. Similarly, Max Lowe has looked an assured presence and another great addition to a defence that was already one of the strongest in the division.
Shrewsbury Town Ladies had their game against Tamworth postponed and have changed next weekend’s fixture and are now to play away to Bereton Town FC.
Shrewsbury Town Under-18's have still not had a fixture since December after a really unlucky run of postponements but are set to play Port Vale on Saturday morning at the Shrewsbury Sports Village in Sundorne.