Crawley were always going to be tested by opponents who had not conceded in their last five away games, so there were obvious benefits from not playing midweek.
Before the game, it is fair to say that their fans were more confident than ours. This is reasonable given our respective recent form. However, this is a league where anyone can beat anyone on their day. Credit must go to Dermot Drummy for setting the team up with an attacking mentality and for not letting heads drop after conceding an equaliser right on half-time. A good team display and no little skill led to us getting a deserved three points.
Jordan Roberts stole the show with his two goals and his link-up play with James Collins. Roberts didn't really turn up at Mansfield but yesterday showed why he was so badly missed during his lengthy absence through injury. He is physically strong and has pace, trickery and skill.
Josh Payne also made a welcome return to the side. Kaby Djalo's form has dipped a little during the past month. Although not as quick, Payne makes up for this with his game intelligence. He keeps the game simple and has a great range of passing. With Kaby in the African Nations Cup in January, it is important that he stays fit for the rest of the season.
In defence, we have struggled to play a consistent line-up. A new left-back must be a priority in January's transfer window as neither Andre Blackman nor Chris Arthur have suggested they are the answer there. Josh Yorwerth was selected ahead of Alex Davey on this occasion and generally played well given that he has only just returned from a loan period at Merthyr Town. However, Lewis Young has deservedly made the right-back position his own. He made a vital tackle near the end at 3-2 and is unrecognisable from the player signed by John Gregory.
Getting players fit should help us to move up the table. There are still some concerns about game management, as shown by conceding late goals in each half from Grimsby's star striker Omar Bogle. This should improve with the confidence that winning games breeds.
Onto Yeovil next weekend and a ground where we seldom play well. A point there would demonstrate that we are back on track.
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