PETERBOROUGH UNITED, HALF SEASON REVIEW
BY IAN McFARLANE
Within writing a pre-season preview, negativity was sadly flooding through my veins as I predicted a lowly 16th place finish and flirtation with the relegation places. I am glad to say, half-way at least, I have been proven wrong. Posh have played some truly captivating football and despite some despairing blips, there has been enough entertainment and promise on show at London Road.
When it comes to narrowing it down to an individual for best player, I’ll have to plump for hotshot Jack Marriott. Had a feeling from watching him at Luton Town last season, he would adapt to the tier jump to League 1. He has done all that and more, currently sat on a phenomenal 21 goals in all competitions at just the half-way stage. A poacher of awesome pedigree, Marriott is a 6-yard destroyer. Hopefully Peterborough can ward away advances from QPR and keep Jack until the end of the season at least. This will help to make sure our push for the play-offs does not disintegrate.
Sadly we have to look at the other end of the spectrum and worst player. He joined the Posh embroiled within plenty of optimism, now looks certain to leave in January and maybe even a possible stint behind bars. After an incredible 40 plus goals last season for Dover Athletic two tiers lower, Ricky Miller has been involved with off-pitch shenanigans and done next to nothing on the pitch. When he has sporadically entered the pitch of play this season, he has looked out of his depth at this level. A return to non-league is surely imminent, even though Mansfield Town and Lincoln City of League 2 have both shown an interest.
I feel the best moment I have experienced at the ABAX this season is the game against Wigan Athletic. One of the pre-season favourites for promotion and currently sitting pretty at the top of the league. They rocked up at the ABAX on Saturday 23rd September, for what turned out to be a ferociously competitive encounter. Posh attacked definitively with Marriott dispatching one and Junior Morias bagging a brace. Also after a poor first-half, Tafazolli and Taylor defended resolutely and were truly brilliant. Every player left everything on the pitch and for this the atmosphere was a cauldron of noise and enthusiasm. After the 3-2 victory the players applauded us, the supporters for a longitudinal space of time, Steven Taylor was Goals On Sunday’s guest the following day and complimented the set up at Peterborough United.
Worst moment(s), strange one this, but I have to say the apathy held by many Posh ‘supporters’, for the early rounds of the FA Cup. Despite reduced ticket prices, disgracefully low Boro turn-outs for the first round, 1-1 draw with Tranmere (3,758) and the second round replay, 5-2 win against Woking (3,022). Also considering a healthy amount of the unhealthy numbers were travelling non-league supporters respectively. Herein lies my frustration, the magic of the FA Cup starts in Round 1, for some sides the preliminaries. Try telling some mental midgets this, they believe the Cup starts when the Corporations enter the fray. However the Posh fans who attended these early round matches, will be left out in the cold for a ticket for a glamorous trip to Villa Park in Round 3. You see the day-out dwellers will emerge from their arm-chairs, zapping up tickets like it’s going out of fashion. Also surrounding village/town soccer schools will take a major amount (probably more than Peterborough soccer schools, that makes sense), just like what happened at Stamford Bridge last season, and yes I was left out in the cold on that one too.
For the New Year, Posh need to keep hold of Marriott, extend keeper Jonathan Bond’s loan spell and also keep hold of little gem Danny Lloyd. Within this notion a play-off berth could be entirely possible and all of my early season pessimism could turn to enduring positivity.
Happy New Year, I will be back with the next instalment of A View From the Posh in early January. Aswell as a match report for New Years Day’s clash with Doncaster Rovers.