It’s been disappointing for me to be out of action recently as I’ve had a little setback with the hamstring injury I suffered earlier in the season.
Despite returning to the team, it’s never really been 100% and I’ve been feeling it at times. I just hoped it would go away so I’d still be available for games, but in the second half at Arsenal it felt a little bit more. Thankfully it was only a small injury so hopefully I can get that right quickly and get back to full fitness soon.
That meant I missed the Swansea game and it was a blow to lose that one. We were looking to get the three points against a team who are in and around us, and it wasn’t a great result. Going forward, especially at home, we need to be picking up wins against teams like that and that should be a lesson for us to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
We also need to make sure we stop conceding late in halves. Against Swansea perhaps a little nervousness crept in, and the fact that we had a day’s less rest probably also didn’t help. Despite those factors, the concentration from us has to be there from the first minute to the 95th. If we had gone in 0-0 at half-time it’s a totally different game, and after Wilf produced a moment of magic that should have been enough to get at least a point, so they’re crucial times to concede and that’s something we need to eradicate.
It was also a shame to miss the trip to Bolton but it was a good chance for the manager to see players who hadn’t played under him in the previous couple of games, and he gave a number a run out including Loic which was a plus. We would have liked to win the game, however to get the clean sheet was a positive as we haven’t had too many this season and hopefully that can be something we can use to try and get a few more.
The replay tonight gives us a chance to try and get our first home win of 2017, and we can’t shy away from the fact that our form at Selhurst Park needs to be better if we’re to get ourselves out of the position we’re in at the minute. We need to be winning our home games, and with the new manager coming in and a change in staff, hopefully we can get that reaction and put on some big performances to achieve some big results in front of our fans.
It’s an important game for us tonight as whether it’s the cup or the league, if you’re winning games the confidence creeps up and you can take that into the next game. Whichever way possible, we need to get a couple of results under our belt and it doesn’t matter if they’re scrappy wins or whatever, we just need the confidence back in the team and then we can start putting more points onto the board.