Coventry On The Up Despite Late Setback
After last weeks demolition of Hartlepool I for one was left wondering what might be for Coventry City.
We faced a Colchester side who are struggling for form themselves just days later. It was one of those games that Coventry would typically lose off the back of the great result but not this time.
The players seemed to have actually taken confidence from the 5-0 win and were allowed once again to express themselves in a way which was effective. In the end the game was won quite comfortably despite late pressure from Colchester as we defended resolutely and fought for every ball. The players looked like they wanted to win and with the amazing away support behind them they kept Colchester at bay.
As the game went into its final stages Coventry countered and scored the third goal which killed the match as a contest. This late goal to finish off the game is something that I can’t remember the last time I experienced as a Coventry fan we are always left biting our nails to the very end and it was strange to know the game was won before the final whistle.
To have that ability to counter and finish the game off has always eluded us and has been a major factor in us letting leads slip in the past. Was this finally time to start believing again, believing we could be successful once more?
With two really good away wins under their belt City went into Saturday’s game against Portsmouth brimming with confidence. It was obvious from the start that the players had the belief that they could win the match and there were plenty of chances created along with good possession of the ball in the first half. The pressure that City built eventually told and a fantastic pass from Bailey allowed McSheffery to finally get on the score sheet, which has been a long time coming.
City took their foot off the gas a little but with the score still at 1-0 Coventry suffered a real bit of bad luck. Once again McGoldrick put the ball in the net only for the linesman’s flag to go up despite McGoldrick looking at least a couple of yards onside.
It was in this moment that the game changed.
Yes we should have finished other chances that we created but this gave Portsmouth belief and as the match continued to progress they piled the pressure on. The inevitable finally happened in the third minute of stoppage time as Coventry once again allowed a slender lead to slip right at the death. A defensive mix up allowed Portsmouth’s Izale McLeod to level the score at 1-1 as all involved were left gutted with their heads in their hands. It was heartbreak for City after a gutsy performance and despite Portsmouth’s dominance in the latter stages I still felt City were worthy of a win.
A point is a point though and it is another game where we have not been beaten. This has to be looked at positively as Coventry’s slow improvement continues under the guidance of Mark Robins. I am really beginning to buy into what he is trying to do here and just maybe we have finally found the man to bring some good times back to the club. Now I don’t want to get ahead of myself as there is a long way too go and plenty more twists and turns to come but things are looking like they are changing.
Not only are results improving but I am finding myself being entertained by the football on show. I’m not saying it is of the highest quality but the way we are playing is making for some entertaining games with chances being created for both teams. Saturday afternoons are finally becoming something I look forward to again instead of wondering how I can justify spending my hard earned money to be bored for two hours and be left disappointed week in week out.
The Portsmouth game was the first of four consecutive home games including an FA cup tie as well as an JPT tie. These games are a chance to improve upon our stuttering home form and if we can get results out of the next three then that puts us in real good stead for the rest of the campaign. The more wins we get and the further we get up the table, the more likely it is that key players will remain at the club with the obvious one being McGoldrick.
We have witnessed in the last few games that whilst McGoldrick is clearly important to what we do, we do have a squad of players who are very capable at this level and I for one have liked what I have seen. One thing that is for sure is there have been more positives than negatives in the last few games and that is a clear sign of progression for this squad. They are not only working hard, they are believing in themselves again and long may that continue.