Town’s impressive start to life in League Two continues to gather momentum as Ben Garner’s side picked up another maximum on the road with a 1-0 win over one of the early promotion favourites Salford City.
Despite taking all the points back to Wiltshire, Town did have one man to thank in particular in the first half who kept out the home side on a few occasions with a string of superb saves.
After showing what he was capable of in a couple of games last season Jojo Wollacott was snapped up in mid-June as the final signing of the last regime and hasn’t looked back, despite Lewis Ward arriving after his successful trial period, it was clear Jojo would be given the chance to show if he can prove he is good enough to be a club’s number one.
Thankfully, in his four league starts he’s shown the management team was right in handing him that chance, which was underlined on Saturday as some fantastic reflex saves kept Town in the contest at Moor Lane before Jack Payne again showed his class and scored the winning goal just after half-time.
I’ve already spoken about how having Jack Payne playing in League Two is almost a cheat code with the amount of talent he brings to the side, his link-up with Tyreece Simpson also shows the impressive maturity from our 19-year-old striker, as in the build-up to the goal, instead of having a crack at goal himself he played in the better positioned Payne to give Town the lead.
Our young loanee from Ipswich hasn’t scored yet in his five appearances but after putting in a good display this weekend I can’t see it being long before he finds the back of the net.
This doesn’t negate the fact another striker in the squad is a must to provide competition for Simpson, and as I mentioned last week, to give him a partner up top, to shake up the starting eleven some weeks, and to give Town a Plan B if we’re chasing a game.
Another player who showed what he was about at the weekend was Dion Conroy who put his body on the line several times in helping Town to earn an important result.
It’s great to see him back playing regularly this season after his fall out with the management in the last campaign after a bad run of results, some players might have done everything they could to cut ties with the club but thankfully he stuck around when the going got tough over the summer, has shown incredible commitment and proved to be a great captain on and off the pitch.
After the success of a new formation over the weekend, it’ll be interesting to see which way the manager goes next Saturday against Mansfield Town at the County Ground.
As the 3-4-2-1 system worked well in Greater Manchester, especially having both Payne and Gladwin behind the striker instead of playing two wingers, which results in pushing Payne out wide where I feel he can sometimes have slightly less influence.
It’s also important to give Kaine Kesler-Hayden the freedom of the right side without him having to panic about getting back as having Odimayo covering in a three-man defence gives the Villa loanee that important freedom to do what he does best.
But whether the manager goes for a 4-2-3-1 or what we saw at the weekend, I’m confident Town can finally end their wait for a home win this season and climb further up the table.