Altrincham FC manager Lee Sinnott will be giving us the inside track on the Robins’ return to the Conference. Here’s his latest column for Altrincham Today.
Despite the fact that Barnet were very impressive on Saturday, I was disappointed that we didn’t perform anywhere near to what we are capable of. The 5-0 scoreline didn’t flatter them – Martin Allen’s team are probably the best team that we have played so far and I can see why they are top of the league.
I didn’t speak for long in the dressing room after the game but asked each player to rate his performance on what was a tough day for everyone.
In this league, it’s apparent that the difference is about the quality in both penalty areas and Barnet defended much better than we did and executed very well. We created chances early on and in the latter stages of the game but our execution was below par and our defending was very poor for some of the Barnet goals.
It was as if we were playing in third gear, while Barnet closed us down in fifth gear and pressed us in units very well. That made it difficult for us to play our normal passing game and we never really got into the right tempo.
[blockquote]After five games in 15 days, we have had an opportunity to prepare for two very important home games in four days[/blockquote]
The demands of this league are far higher, physically and mentally, than in the Vanarama North. We did quite a lot of travelling last year, but this year, it’s on a different level and that can make players jaded at times. The matches themselves are far more intense and to some degree we are still adjusting to that, but I am confident that we will do over the duration of the season.
I’m certainly not complaining. We want to play at this level and there is no reason why this group of players can’t do well. After five games in 15 days, we have had an opportunity to prepare for two very important home games in four days.
Welling United visit the J Davidson Stadium on Saturday and they are one of the teams in our mini-league who are expected to be in the bottom third of the table, so three points would turn things round nicely after the heavy defeats at Kidderminster and Barnet.
We have a big derby game against Macclesfield on Tuesday night and both sets of fans will really be up for that. Macclesfield have started very well and only lost once to date and I am expecting a very tight game.
We will be without Dave Parton in goal on Saturday. He is still suffering from the concussion that he sustained in conceding a penalty on Saturday. Stuart Coburn will come back into the side and will be determined to impress. Sean Williams and Ryan Crowther are back in training but are unlikely to feature on Saturday. Simon Richman is available after his one-match suspension.
Next home games at The J Davidson Stadium:
Saturday September 27th (3pm): Welling United
Tuesday September 30th (7.45pm): Macclesfield Town
For further information, see www.altrinchamfc.co.uk