IT'S fair to say that the past week hasn’t been the best seven days since I returned to Newport County!
The defeat to Barrow last Saturday was bad enough but all of the players felt even worse than usual because the supporters had made such a great effort to clear the snow off the pitch at Rodney Parade to get the game on.
The turn out from our fans was amazing and it certainly didn’t go unnoticed by us.
They deserved a win after that but it was just one of those days for us.
Barrow are obviously fighting for their lives at the bottom of the Conference and they caught us cold.
We gave away some silly goals again and just couldn’t get back into the match.
With Aaron O’Connor getting injured as well it was a day to forget and then we had the crazy trip to Woking on Tuesday for a game that was always going to be under real threat from the snow.
Woking were desperate to get the game on because they probably thought they could beat us without Azza but it wasn’t to be.
It was annoying to get all the way down there and have no game to play and we ended up using all our frustration for a full-on snowball fight on the pitch.
But it was another blow for our loyal supporters as well because they spent a lot of time and money getting down there in terrible conditions and all for nothing.
We saw a load of fans turning up just as we were leaving and like us they wouldn’t have got home until gone 10pm so it was a real waste of a day for everyone concerned.
We’ll be well up for beating Woking when it’s rescheduled!
It’s been a bad week for County but a brilliant one for my old club Bradford City, who made it to the Capital One Cup final by overcoming Aston Villa.
For a League Two side to make it to Wembley at the expense of Premier League sides like Villa, Arsenal and Wigan, as well as Championship promotion hopefuls Watford, is just unbelievable.
I’m so pleased for all the fans, the two chairmen and for Phil Parkinson who has done a great job there since he took over last year.
I know they’re playing another Welsh side but I’m definitely backing the Bantams and if I can get a ticket I’ll be at Wembley cheering them on.
Because of Tuesday’s match at Woking being postponed and today’s trip to Southport off because of their FA Trophy game we’ve had to wait a long time to think about the defeat to Barrow.
We definitely need to bounce back with a win at home to Braintree on Tuesday night in another game that was postponed from just before Christmas.
The whole squad has been working hard on fitness in the gym over the last few days doing all sorts of stuff with a personal trainer.
We’ve done spin classes, which really take it out of you, and so many weight sessions that my arm hurts when I lift it up to drink a cup of tea!
We’ll be on the training pitch again today working on things ahead of Tuesday’s match.
I know the manager is still looking to strengthen the squad in the last week of the transfer window and we’re going to miss Aaron O’Connor but we’re confident we have the quality to get back to winning ways.
Any side in the division is going to miss a player of Aaron’s class.
He’s the top scorer in the Conference and, as I said last week, he’s been playing more like a Championship striker lately.
But Christian Jolley and Robbie Willmott showed how good they can be up at Lincoln a few weeks ago and we’ve a also got Danny Crow getting back to full fitness and Ryan Charles, Conor Washington and Jake Harris all waiting for their chance up front.
We know we need to cut out the defensive errors that are costing us goals at the moment and we’re working hard to do that.
It’s not just about the back four and the goalkeeper, it’s about how the whole team defends when we haven’t got the ball and hopefully we’ll gat that right against Braintree and finally put the Barrow defeat behind us.
Finally I thought I’d mention an event me and David Pipe are attending the week after next.
The Newport County AFC Supporters Trust has organised a curry night where you can meet me and Pipey at the Shoboraj Indian Restaurant on Malpas Road on Monday, February 4.
We’ll be enjoying a good meal and then doing a question and answer session afterwards.
If you’re interested in coming along you can contact Dave Roberts on 07595 044179.
The poppadoms are on me and Pipey’s getting the curries!