By Jacob Greenwood
Football is officially back, and it hasn’t been a quiet week for The Cards. In fact, the highs and lows of football were summed up in the last week.
Curtain Raiser In East London
Dagenham away has become somewhat of an important stage, and a happy hunting ground, for Woking in the last few years – and so it should be if we are paying £21 to get in! Between staying up on the last day in 2016/17 season, finding (what we thought was) a new lease of life in Jason Godliffe’s first game as caretaker manager and now an opening day showdown – it’s always memorable. It was no different this year, as everything went right for The Cards, from the new 5-3-2 formation to Joe Quigley missing a shot that would have been easier to score, it was a brilliant way to lay down a marker and send out a message to the rest of the league.
It’s always a buzz when unfancied, part-time Woking are spoiling the big boys’ party and being one of the hundreds of Cards fans singing at full-time as the squad celebrated, I can safely say that’s why we stick with the club through thick and thin.
-Good creativity for Gerring’s new song – “Stands at 6ft3, f**ing hates Torquay”
-Moussa Diarra/Manny Parry partnership was outstanding and the new song to the tune you Kolo/Yaya Toure wasn’t bad
-Perfect away performance, utilising our strength and height
-If you charge away fans £21, you don’t deserve home wins
Death, Taxes and Losing To Aldershot
It was of course only fitting, that in true football style, we came crashing back down to earth only a few days later. Although there are plenty of forum posts about how and why we lost, I can put it down to three things – the 5-3-2 being anticipated and countered well by The Shots, our hit-and-hope approach and a voodoo curse being placed on the club when we play our neighbours. I’m starting to think the third reason is the most valid!
However, a crowd of just under 4,000, the home kit not being as awful as everyone made out and knowing if we took our chances we might have been okay, gave fans a few things to cling on to that night. Still, truding out of Kingfield as the opposition wildly celebrate a derby win will always be a low-blow.
-The home kit was ready in time and was surprisingly nice
-The Shots fans didn’t break the barrier
-Jack Cook as a RWB outlet, not the best tactic
Bouncing Back To Blow Harrogate Away
Okay, we didn’t blow Harrogate away, but there was an opportunity to use a weather-related pun. However, after a shaky first 15 minutes, what a performance! Harrogate reached the play-offs last season and after winning 3-0 away at Barrow on Tuesday, it was clear this was going to be a tough game. Tactically I think Dowse got this one spot on and once we got into the game, we more than matched Harrogate. They squandered good opportunities and we got a bit of luck in the winner and keeping them out, but don’t underestimate some great performances across the park. Poku and Meite took their chances as they both got started their first games of the season and Johnson’s pace and skill look like they will be an important outlet this season.
A battling performance was exactly what Woking needed after Tuesday’s defeat and if our luck was out against The Shots, it was in yesterday and we made it count.
– Donnellan proved if you don’t shoot, you don’t score
-Johnson gave their left back the run-around and will be more than a handful this season
-We’ll be no pushovers this season
-Jon Stead is still playing at 38
A week is a long time in football, and the first of the season was a rollercoaster ride, but there’s a long way to go yet, so hold on tight!
Images by David Holmes and can be viewed at wokingfc.co.uk