Opposing views: Swindon fans hope Flitcroft can arrest recent decline

Three Swindon Town supporters share their thoughts ahead of the game at Vale Park.

The last few years have been a disastrous decline with a model of taking young Premier League cast-off failures and loaned and converting them into League One failures…

Thanks to REP for asking the questions to fans in thetownend.com forum.

About the fans

BATCH – I’m “Batch”. I think I have other names but they don’t get used at football. I started following Town in the late 80’s but missed most of the Premier League high through being away at Uni. Coming from ‘Ciren’ (Cirencester) I really only started coming to games regularly after passing my driving test.

FreddySTFC – I’m Welsh and I was taken to my first ever football match by my uncle (who married into the family) when I was 9 years old. Ironically it was against you lot and we won 2-0 in the first game of the 94/95 season, Jan Aage Fjortoft & Keith Scott getting the goals. I understandably became hooked & have been a season ticket holder since 96/97. I’ve seen plenty of downs & the occasional up since then.

4D – I have followed the club since 1989, but stopped going regularly in 2010.

How will Swindon do this season?

BATCH – After the total rebuild and diametric change in styles I had no idea at the start of the season and still don’t. We could finish anywhere from the top three to lower mid table. My best guess is just inside or outside the play-offs!

FreddySTFC – Being competitive at the top-half of the table would satisfy the majority of supporters after the **** we’ve had to watch for the last two seasons. Seeing a side try to win games and players that give a **** would be a vast improvement on last season. In terms of a finishing position my heart says third and my head says ninth based on what I’ve seen so far. Putting a run of consistent results together and a decent January transfer window could easily change my mind on that front.

4D – We’ll finish 8th.

How is the manager doing, any danger players?

BATCH – Our manager (Flitcroft) seems an honest, no-nonsense straight talking type. He doesn’t seem one for tippy-tappy football, which after the last two seasons is a breath of fresh air when we win, and a load of long ball rubbish when we lose. But there is pressure on him to deliver after being given supposedly a largish budget for the league. Danger Players- Tough one. Norris has scored a few but is injured. I quite like the work ethic of Mullin, but he’s often a sub. Anderson is from the Premier League, but its Palace. Er…. I think we have a team of no-nonsense grafters so picking a silky skilled tear-em-up twinkle toes is difficult. Preston in defence has made a big difference to how solid we look so I’m saying him. ’cause he’ll keep you out and we’ll wear you down (possibly!)

FreddySTFC – David Flitcroft has been a steady 7/10 so far. He isn’t pulling any trees up but he was left with a massive rebuild on his hands when appointed and is slowly imprinting his ideologies on the team and club.

4D – He’s doing OK. Luke Norris is the dangerman.

How are the board doing?

BATCH – The last few years have been a disastrous decline with a model of taking young Premier League cast-off failures and loaned and converting them into League One failures (mostly) so we can flog them to anyone who walked past the ground. The chairman (Power) was never going to be popular under such a backdrop.
This year to be fair to him, he’s employed a manager and let the manager get on with it. It’s like having a proper club back, even if we “fail”.

FreddySTFC – I know very little about the board other than that our chairman, Lee Power, has largely taken a back seat this season in comparison to his previous levels of involvement. Player recruitment is reportedly now down to the manager which hasn’t been the case for some time. On a personal level, I would like the board to provide more information on the development of our recently purchased training ground and their ambitions to purchase and develop the County Ground although there may be factors preventing this. No news is good news Hmmm…

4D – I don’t read much about it

Can you recommend any blogs or forums?

BATCH – Here on the TEF  is quite unmoderated. “The Washbag” is/was quite good but I’ve not seen much from them this season

FreddySTFC – Despite being scarcely populated these days this forum is still the best one out there for Towns fans. Matchday threads are becoming skinnier by the week unfortunately though!

4D – Can’t think of any decent forums, this one might be worth a look.

Any memories of previous games with Vale?

BATCH – Son #1’s first ever game: 19-April 2008: 6-0. Son #2’s first ever game: 20-April 2012. 5-0.
FreddySTFC – Being 3-0 down and drawing 3-3 at Vale Park was memorable for Matt Hewlett scoring if nothing else. Winning League Two under Paolo Di Canio and sealing the title with a 5-0 win at the CG will also live long in the memory.
4D – The one that sticks in my mind was 0-0 last game of the season about 8 or 9 years ago.

A score prediction and attendance?

BATCH – Since son#3 will be traveling to his first game so… no, only joking, I’m out of sons now. I’m guessing a tight 1-0/2-1 win. I think you may edge it..756 away fans.

FreddySTFC – 2-1 Vale. Pope with two and McDermott for us. Attendandce. 5,345 (462 away)

4D – 0-1 Norris. Attendance 5,747 (865 away)

Swindon fans… there is parking available a five minute walk away from the stadium at Haywood Academy ST6 7AB. Cost is just £3 per car.
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