We’ve got not one but two Shrewsbury fans who want to share their pre-match thoughts.
REP talks to Champagneprice and Lenny from the excellent Blue and Amber forum
1. Tell us a bit about yourself?
41 years a fan. First game was a 0-0 versus Aldershot, other than a few special occasions it’s never really got any better.
Younger than most fans, first game was a 2-0 win against Cheltenham in 2006. Help out with the Supporters’ Trust.
2. How are your team doing?
I thought we’d build on last years performance, which was acceptable. Others thought we wouldn’t, they were right. Our form at the moment is relegation form although we did give the league leaders a fright in the last home game.
****, hoping to kick on from mid-table last season by staying around the same – considering the strength and finances of the teams coming down and up, even finishing a place or two lower than last season would be deemed progress. In reality, I would have taken 20th and still would. Some people got their expectations up because of soundbites from the chairman, but we’ve done everything on the cheap (although not all loan signings are cheap!) and it has, so far, hurt us.
3. Who should we watch out for?
We have an airport carousel of loanee players and anyone of them could be a gem if they got their arses into gear. Ryan Woods is homegrown talent who has burst onto the scene this season and earned a first time place with some very good performances.
Paul Parry – capable of scoring wonder goals. Prone to drifting out of games. Ryan Woods – 20 year old midfielder playing at RB, probably our most talented youth product since Joe Hart. Not entirely comfortable defensively but he does better than most there and can actually control a ball, which is nice.
4. What are your thoughts on your manager?
Too early to say. He’s had two good games (but only took a point) and then a loss to Sheff Utd. A tough start really with a threadbare squad padded out by unknown loanees. I’m not sure if Pep or Mourinho could get the level of improvement needed.
Pleasantly surprised by the first two games. Only viewed by fans as a stop-gap, we put in two smashing performances against two very good sides and probably deserved at least four points. By all accounts we were dodgy on Saturday, though. Talks the talk and revitalised training sessions, so he’s got something going for him. Jury still out, really.
5. What are your thoughts on your board and off-field club activities?
I personally don’t think we’ve got any money to invest. This division seems to have been a bit of a culture shock to them, as in the increase of attendances doesn’t necessarily go hand in hand with the wages for decent players.
Board? What board? Our chairman has done a lot of good for the club, but the lack of transparency is infuriating. One of many who feels the time is right for a change, even if it’s just two or three new faces in the boardroom to shake up the present dictatorship.
6. Any views on Port Vale?
Tom Pope. A goalscoring type we so badly need.
Not really. You have a better squad than us. Glad you’ve got shot of Lee Hughes.
7. Any views & memories of players/managers that have been involved with both teams?
None I can think of.
Chris Neal – if we keep shooting, we’ll score. Joe Anyon, some of our fans don’t like him. Played about 120 minutes for us in close to two years at the club.
8. A score prediction?
1-1 (Eaves, Pope. We will score first, get all excited and then you’ll equalise in the 90th minute due to some controversial decision, which will see some of your fans go nuts, run on the pitch, crash through the hoardings and give it the big ‘un to the stewards).
I’ll be optimistic and say we’ll return to the performances from Jacko’s first two games (if we do you’ll do well to take a point), take a 2-1 win with an OG and deflected Jon Taylor strike giving us the win.