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U's Vs Altrincham - Durham's Preview
Sunday, 6th Dec 2015 09:27 by Durham Exile
After a weekend which has seen Storm Desmond wreak havoc in the North of England, particularly Cumbria and parts of Durham, football is put very much in perspective.
Today though offers both teams the opportunity to secure a Third Round draw against one of the elite of English Football and Chelsea!
Lee Sinnott brings his Altrincham team to the WHCS in the knowledge that they have accumulated 17 league scalps over the years. Ironically that record stands even though they had not accounted for a league team since season 1994-95 until the Tykes in Round One this season.
Altrincham are not to be taken lightly however. Despite languishing in 18th place in the Vanarama National League and with two players suspended (O'Keefe and Havern) after being dismissed in their last outing in an ill tempered affair at Forest Green, they will start today at 2pm virtually as equals.
Colchester legend Wayne Brown, Caretaker boss of the U's knows that he has been given two games to prove his managerial qualities and in fairness he really can't complain when you consider that those opponents are Altrincham and Barnsley, both at home and both eminently winnable.
But the U's are leaking goals, with 49 in 20 league games and confidence is undoubtedly low. I watched a bright start against Burton last Saturday quickly fizzle out and the U's shipped another 5 goals in a game that at one stage they could have deservedly won.
WB will be aware of the threat not only from the Robins but also the press who will be present together with the TV cameras at the merest suggestion of an upset.
Brownie will be looking of course to win the game, but he will be acutely aware of the importance of keeping a clean sheet. Jones was unfairly criticised last week by small elements of the faithful. That was unwarranted at a time when the U's are fragile and require support both physical and mental.
Storm Desmond is moving south but weakening all the time, the match should be ok this afternoon and apart from strong winds , there should be little of the accompanying rainfall which we have experienced in Northern Britain.
WB is unlikely to change the back four, he was present before the game last week with the back four of Brindley, Eastman, Kent and Briggs and I do not expect that formation to change today. The rest of the team could look something like this:
Brindley Kent Eastman Briggs
Edwards Moncur Gilbey
Harriott Sordell Massey
Parish Olufemi Ambrose Sembie-Ferris Szmodics Wright Porter
WB will get his charges to approach this game with professionalism and intent from the outset. It is all about the victory today and securing a clean sheet will go a considerable way to achieving that aim.
It is the FA Cup and a welcome distraction from the league. The faithful will be present together with a healthy contingent from Cheshire. I expect Colchester to prevail and to do so they must start strong and overcome any early nerves to score the goals necessary to ensure that they do not become league victim number 18 for the Robins.
2-0 to the U's would be just the ticket for the draw on Monday evening.
Enjoy the game. Up the U's
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