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Club News

Marcus On Monday

18 March 2019

Marcus Braddock takes a look at all things Shrewsbury Town.

We can start this week's look back with some very recent news about two of our supporters. Roger Groves and Mike Davis have been named EFL Sky Bet League One Supporters Of The Year for their work with STFC Supporters
 Parliament to bring Safe Standing to the Montgomery Meadow.

This is a well-deserved award in both cases, many years ago I worked with both on a couple of supporter lead events and what people don't see is the amount of unseen work involved in projects like this. Mike and Roger head up the Supporters Parliament which is full of people like them, giving their spare time to enhance the name of this football club. I imagine I'm not alone in being grateful that we have supporters like this who make us proud of our club.


It's been a bit of a mixed bag results wise with a win and a defeat from our two games last week. On Tuesday, Town fans travelled to Plymouth in the hope of a point or three but those hopes were dashed after eight minutes when ex-Town loan striker Freddie Ladapo put away the rebound from a Steve Arnold save.

We managed to nose our way back into the game in the second half and won a penalty after a period of pressure on Plymouth. Ollie Norburn was fouled on route to goal and stepped up to take the resulting penalty. Initial disappointment at the penalty save was forgotten an instant later when Norburn followed the ball in and put it away to level. Having done the hard part by equalizing and pretty much seeing the game out, a final bout of Pilgrim's pressure earned them a penalty as Anthony Grant tried to clear.


I was hoping to clear my mind of Tuesday's game with a positive result at home to struggling Wycombe Wanderers. The importance of the game overshadowed the fact that we'd not beaten Wycombe at home in the league since our first meeting in 1994. I felt a little sorry for almost everyone who wasn't under some sort of cover, the ball collectors, players and even the referee's assistants. The rain hammered down which did nothing for the spectacle before us, particularly in the first half.

We improved markedly in the second half but it was Wycombe who opened the scoring with a stunning free kick from Jason McCarthy. Neither team had really done enough earn a goal by then in my view but when an individual conjures a free kick of that sort of quality, all you can do is accept it and feel pig sick that it wasn't from one of our players. Our equalizer was late and was the work of Sam Ricketts' substitutes. Greg Docherty delivered an 87th-minute free-kick into the Wycombe box and Omar Beckles popped up in the perfect position to nod it past the helpless Yves Makaba-Makalamby.

Given their form, Id hoped for more than a draw against Wycombe. So when Shaun Whalley made a jinking run into the box and was fouled, I experienced the joy of a midweek Plymouth fan. Ollie Norburn stepped up to score his third penalty in the last five games and his tenth goal in all competitions this season.

We have eight games to play and there is a difference of just three points between the teams between 21st and 12th. Our form in our last eight games would place us in eleventh and our form is better than any of the teams below us.

In the case of Oxford, their form is very close to ours but the rest are averaging less than a point per game. Wycombe seem to be falling fast with 2 points from a possible 24, Accrington and Scunthorpe fans will also be a little worried given their points and form. So all we have to do is keep up our form and we should be OK? Yes, that would give us 55 points which I think should be enough but it does depend on who we're playing.


Next up for Shrewsbury Town is a home game against promotion-chasing Portsmouth who have been around the top five for pretty much the whole season. They did have a bit of a wobble with a winless league run that lasted from mid-January until the start of March but have won three of their last four, only losing away at Charlton. Pompey's away form is irritatingly good, marginally better than at home so we've a difficult game to come and I might be repeating those words a few more times yet this season.

The youth team will be following up last Saturday's 1-1 draw at home to Wrexham by travelling to Morecambe to take on their under 18's. In the home game against Morecambe, Town ran out as 2-0 winners with goals from James Rowland and Lifumpa Mwandwe.

 


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