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Calls for belief and calm are justified at this stage of the season

Tom Walters

In recent weeks I’ve read articles calling for calm around Notts County, with Alan Smith among a few I’ve seen stressing on the need for level heads and a sense of realism in the early stages of the season. I share the sentiments of those who haven’t lost patience with the team so far this season.

I think what Notts fans need to remember is that it’s still November and nothing is cemented yet. The season has much of its course to run, so belief in what Ricardo Moniz is trying to instil into this squad must remain throughout the club and the fans at this stage. It’s an entirely new squad in essence, with new faces and mentalities thrown in the mix all at once. In all fairness, in my opinion we’re not a million miles from the finished article. 

The signing of Alan Sheehan on load from Bradford has, in my eyes, been one of the best bits of business this season alongside the signing of Izale McLeod. I literally punched the air in celebration when we announced the return of a player who was so significant in our great escape in May 2014. His inclusion in the back four has been a masterstroke – making us much more stubborn at the back, allowing us to build from the back and ultimately sort out the dismal away form and help build the momentum at fortress Meadow Lane. 

Goals haven’t flowed how we might have expected at the other end, but again, with time I believe this will simply happen. Adam Campbell is a promising prospect, full of energy and creative flair, and once we see the full return of Kyle Da Silva in the squad, defences in League 2 might just start quaking in their boots a bit more. With a couple of months gone I think Moniz now has an idea of his strongest 11 and where people fit into his philosophy.

Granted, the defeat against Salford wasn’t part of the script and I can’t ignore the disappointment I felt following that performance live to the nation – for any Notts supporter it was most certainly a night to forget. However, time is a great healer in my eyes and I have no reason to doubt Ricardo’s strategy or his selection so far. He’s had to learn about this squad as quickly as anyone, having built it from the ground up over the summer. Wait until the end of January and see where we are then. 

It’s only at that stage that we can start to make calls on whether this team can ultimately compete at the right end of the table. With the investment and the quality, I would certainly hope so. As for the recent form, my outlook is to scrap Salford, condemn it to history and move on. At this time, more than any other stage of the season, the team need to feel that the fans are behind them. Let’s hope they can recreate the jubilant atmosphere that followed the Portsmouth victory!

Onwards and upwards!

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If we can get our form away from home sorted, it would change things - even if some of the games we picked up draws (rather than loses).

I understand the calls for Moniz to go and the out cry.

Yet I am concerned that we may not be giving him the time he requires but I do admit, results work against giving him time.

Good read Tom, thanks.

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A good read Tom. Unfortunately Notts fans don't 'do' calm and tbh, the performances seem quite strange considering the talent the squad has. Silly mistakes like yesterday keep happening and team shape is a regular issue. Interesting to see if Smith and Carroll get dropped because of it. Carroll has been doing this for a while now though and it's been coming for a long time. Good keeper? Yes. Arrorgant? Yes.


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