Same shit, different season. Match report: Grimsby 1-4 Forest Green

Please don’t let my first blog of the season be a rant. Please don’t let my first blog of the season be a rant. Please don’t let my first blog…

Oh for fu-

What occurred, I hear you ask, between 5th May and 4th August 2018 that could go even a quarter of the way to explaining a six-goal swing against a team that’s named after a bunch of trees?

Who knows. Well, I hope one person does because if Michael Jolley doesn’t then we’re in for another long, long season.

It was certainly an efficient way to kill months of positivity in an instant. Everything that helped build up that positivity at the end of 2017/18 was crowbarred round the back of the legs inside 90 depressing minutes at Blundell Park.

Who needs 4-4-2 when you have that system the national team plays? They got to the semi-finals of the world cup with it, after all. Just ignore the times it failed when we played decent opposition.

Any match in which Gavin Gunning is made to look a world-beater is going to have you frothing at the mouth, given what we know (and what we saw) of the bloke.

It’s thanks to Morecambe’s sheer ineptness, which somehow saved them from the drop last season, that we do not occupy bottom spot in the division.

It feels like we’re quickly establishing ourselves as the new Barnet; the team that lives on the precipice of non-league – something that future generations of football fans will come to associate us with.

Meanwhile, the majority of Town fans continue to believe that we truly belong two divisions higher.

I wasn’t at the game today, Burnsy. In its wisdom, the ECB decided to stage the first of five England test matches against India over the same weekend the Football League season began (and they wonder why red ball cricket attendances are falling through the floor).

To tell you the truth, even the cricket didn’t stop me from returning for this curtain raiser. I just didn’t fancy it, and that worries me deeply.

It’s almost like I need to know that this season won’t be like last season, and then I’ll jump on the bandwagon as it free-wheels to automatic promotion (or, more likely, a dirty flirt with the play-offs that ultimately leaves us feeling unsatisfied).

A lot of fans have pointed out that we won the first game last season and look how that turned out.

But did you see what happened to the team we beat that day?

Losing at home is never nice – certainly not to Forest Green, and certainly not on the opening day. And certainly not when at least three of your more talented players combine to fuck up backpasses and clearances to gift two goals to the opposition.

If I’d been there, I’d have quite happily been escorted out of the ground in a headlock by an over-zealous steward.

Still, let’s not over-react. It’s difficult to conclude much – other than we were completely shit for 90 minutes – given there’s a lack of context at play.

For all we know, we could hit back with a swashbuckling victory at Macclesfield next week, which will restore at least some of the positivity before it gets knocked out of us again by Lincoln later this month.

It’s always easier to be cynical. Right now I haven’t got the time or effort to be anything else, but deep down I do feel that Saturday’s shocker was an anomaly.

Jolley has already shown he can turn a season around. All he has to do now is turn our week around.

Piece of cake, surely?

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