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Southend United's Neil Harris: The next two games are must win for our season
WE have two absolute must win matches coming up at Roots Hall in quick succession.
We play Torquay United there this Saturday before Plymouth Argyle visit the following Tuesday and we need to take six points.
If we do that then the league table will start to look different again and I’m sure we will be closer to the play-offs.
We targeted three wins from our next games before we went to Port Vale and that’s still possible.
But there’s no hiding how disappointed we all were by the defeat to AFC Wimbledon on Tuesday night.
Just like everyone else, I expected us to kick on after Sean Clohessy fired us in front from the penalty spot but that didn’t happen.
It wasn’t down to a lack of effort but Wimbledon were a big, physical side and, on the night, they were just better than us.
We gave away a couple of bad goals and didn’t create many chances ourselves.
However, we must have a positive response to the defeat and we need to start strongly, like we do in away games, when we face Torquay at the weekend.
We need to play a high tempo, get the fans right behind us and not be afraid to have that extra touch when on the ball.
Our home form has to improve and it’s hard to put your finger on why.
When we’re away, teams do play differently against us and we have more space to attack because they’re pushing forward more themselves.
But at Roots Hall, visiting teams sit back and we have to be able to deal with that.
Torquay and Plymouth will both employ those kinds of tactics I’d imagine and we need to force the initiative, put our heads in where it hurts and get the points we need to get closer to the top seven again.
MESSI AND BARCELONA ARE JUST UNREAL
HAVING watched the highlights of Barcelona’s 4-0 win against AC Milan I don’t think there can be any arguments that they are one of the best teams ever and Lionel Messi is among the best players to have ever played the game.
To do what they did against a top Italian team, who really know how to play themselves, was remarkable and Messi is just ridiculously good.
I think he’s scored in something like 17 successive league games and to have that belief, desire and consistently makes him a very special talent.
SIX NATIONS PROVE HOME NATIONS SHOULD RETURN
AFTER our game against Torquay on Saturday I will be watching the closing stages of England against Wales in the Six Nations and that has the makings of a great game.
I’m a big fan of the England rugby team and have been lucky enough to go to a few of their games.
There’s always an awesome atmosphere and, with the title and a possible grand slam on the line this weekend, I think it will be spine tingling in Cardiff.
I would love to be there but I think the atmosphere and the excitement the Six Nations regularly brings shows just why the Home Nations should return in football even if it was just every other season to avoid clashing with World Cups and European Championships.