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Poor Turnout For Training (Sunday 23rd Jan.)

We only had 8 players at training this morning (Darryl, Cokell, Lexton, Colin, Rob Brown, Rob Dodds, Tony King & Stuart...who only turned up because he hadn't read his texts & e-mails and didn't realise the match had been called off !), so my prediction of 20 was way wide of the mark.

Colin said to me that he will look forward to reading the 'rant' on here, but no, I'm not going to rant...although it might sound like it !
It's just a wake-up call for me really. I just have to accept (once again) that the large majority of our players simply have more important things to do, especially when we don't have a match. Also, they don't have time to read the Forum, the e-mails, the Video Notes & text messages that I send them and most don't even think about Rovers until the morning of the match.
However, I'll continue to do all those notifications just in case any players are interested in them. If they're not and don't turn up, then so be it.

If we had played a match this morning, we would definitely have been fielding just 10 men as follows: Darryl (GK); Stuart (SW), Rob Brown (CH), Lexton (CH); Colin (RM), Cokell (Holding CM), Terry Brown (CM), Tony King (LM); Conor (CF), Smithy (CF).
Although I trained, I would not have been able to play in a match due to an ear infection.
Kizza, Dean & Lee King will all be on the 'name & shame' list as Sunday morning drop-outs for this week, as they would not have been there for a match. Kizza texted in the middle of the night saying he was injured, and Dean & Lee just didn't show up (again). Dean's phone was turned off when John Scouller phoned him to give him a lift.
I won't be classing Terry Brown, Conor & Smithy as Sunday morning drop-outs this week as I know they would have been there for a match. I have no complaints whatsoever about Conor deciding to stay in Leigh-On-Sea, Smithy deciding to work or Terry deciding to go out on the p!ss last night. It's frustrating that I cannot be told on a Friday that they were going to be doing that, but as I say, I now accept that in 95% of cases for all our players, it is always a spur-of-the moment thing on a Saturday night/Sunday morning to do other things. I'll continue to do the name & shame list anyway just for interest, but I will be going along with Trev now in his decision that he is just going to pick his best 14-16 players every Monday even if they say they are 50/50. If we end up with less than eleven because of last-minute drop outs and nobody else willing to play at short notice, then we will just have to put up with it. A non-fulfilment (or two) is inevitable sooner or later, but we just have to accept that and pay the fine.

We can't put all these new players or non-first-choice players who turn up to training in the squad ahead of our first-choice 14-16 yet because in most cases they are even more unfit than they are, they have exactly the same problems with other priorities, and in several cases, they simply can't get up on Sunday morning after a Saturday night out.
As long as they are all willing to keep coming training on Wednesday nights and turn up to matches (to play or watch) when they are not doing anything else though, that's fine by me.

In an ideal world, we would have a squad of players who turn up to matches & training every week as East Herts, Flamstead End, AFC Cheshunt, Hop Poles & Turnford Geese's players do, but I think it's clear after today that it's never going to happen.

At least those who were there at training this morning enjoyed themselves though. Better than a boring 5-mile run on your own !