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Southend United's Neil Harris: Time to bounce back
AFTER the disappointment of the floodlight failure at Aldershot we’re back in action with two games in the space of three days this weekend and we’re really looking forward to it.
On Saturday we’re at AFC Wimbledon and I’m sure there will be an excellent atmosphere in the ground.
I’ve played a pre-season friendly there before and they have fantastic support and we’ve again sold out our allocation so there should be an even better atmosphere this time.
After that we’re at home to Dagenham and that’s our local derby this season so there should be plenty of noise inside the ground that day too.
We will be trying to get back on track after the recent sticky patch we’ve been on and it’s so frustrating we didn’t get the opportunity to get back to winning ways at Aldershot on Boxing Day.
We were 1-0 up and Aldershot were also down to 10 men when the lights went off before the start of the second half.
Ninety nine times out of 100 we would’ve gone on to get the three points from that kind of scenario and it’s certainly been hard to take.
However, we have to try and take the positives from it because we were actually playing very well again.
We looked comfortable against a team who have an excellent home record and we now need to try and keep that up.
As far as I’m aware it was also the first floodlight failure I’ve experienced in my whole career and it goes to show you’re never too old to taste a footballing first.
It also stirs up a debate about what should happen when games do get stopped because of the lights.
But I certainly don’t think the result should ever stand because anything can happen in football.
I think there’s no option but to replay the game and we will just have to make sure we have the correct mental approach when we go back.
However, what I do find strange is the situation with the yellow and red cards.
Liam Dickinson is now banned for the AFC Wimbledon game after being booked at Aldershot but why does the yellow card count and his goal doesn’t?
The game also doesn’t count towards the suspensions of Peter Gilbert and Bilel Mohsni and their player who was sent off will now be suspended for three matches – but not against us.
He could end up scoring the winning goal against us next time and I just don’t see where the justice is in that.
It all seems very strange but we just have to get on with it and focus on getting good results over the weekend.
We’ve been preparing well for the games and we’re in training on Christmas Day.
Of course it’s always sad to have to leave the kids and your family on Christmas and it’s strange driving in on roads with hardly any other cars.
But once you get to the training ground it’s business as usual and it’s just like any other training session.
Of course, there has been plenty of talk about the presents everyone got and it’s great that Father Christmas gave Ryan Hall his own football to play with as he doesn’t want to ever get rid of the one we’re all supposed to use!
Sean Clohessy was given the latest Eminem CD which had a picture of himself on the front and Liam Dickinson was given a copy of Happy Feet on DVD.
Dicko’s suspension will also give him more time to be able to publicise the film’s sequel which has also just come out.
He’s pleased about that and Anthony Grant was delighted to get some new slippers.
Around the training ground we all wear flip-flops but Granty, for some reason, wears Bart Simpson slippers.
They have now faded though so he was chuffed to get some new ones!
I dread to think what Alex Woodyard got but he’s been getting plenty of stick again this week.
He boasted on the team coach that he had never lost a game of noughts and crosses – but he was then beaten after three times in about 30 seconds and didn’t even seem to know the rules!