Linnets: the answer's in the future, not the past

Junior Morias keeps his eyes on the ball

Junior Morias keeps his eyes on the ball - it went in the back of the Dagenham net once, but it was a game of missed opportunities - Credit: Ian Burt

Ian Culverhouse has been bombarded by advice this week - much of it he will likely be blissfully unaware of - on how to solve his goal scoring problem. 

The Linnets boss stood and watched as chances went begging against Dagenham & Redbridge at the weekend. 

Lynn produced a stellar first-half performance against the National League leaders, but the icing on the cake was missing. 

Ian Culverhouse on the sidelines

Ian Culverhouse on the sidelines - a man who probably doesn't need too much advice - Credit: Ian Burt

Culverhouse had hoped to see Gold Omotayo and Junior Morias form a fruitful partnership up front, but Morias’s red card in the season opener ruled him out for three games – and when he returned against the Daggers, Omotayo was watching from the stands, a leg propped up carefully to avoid further damage to his ankle ligaments – he'll be out for a few more weeks yet. 

So the burden is on the shoulders of Morias and loan striker Malachi Linton.

Morias got a late consolation, one which he deserved after the effort he put in, but it’s just the sixth goal in five games for the Linnets – only bottom side Dover and Stockport have scored fewer. 

Let's be fair here; this isn't a crisis - just an irritating problem when your best-laid plans have been disrupted. 

The problem can be partially addressed by signing another striker, but they are the most expensive of all footballing commodities. Lynn are in the market, but Culverhouse’s response to the question was to rub thumb and index finger together - the internationally-recognised sign language for ‘might be pricey’. 

The alternative? Well, if you listen to some supporters there are a few – not one of which works. 

Adam Marriott celebrates scoring the opening goal of the game with strike partner (L) Michael Gash.

Michael Gash, left, and Adam Marriott - time to let go of the past - Credit: Ian Burt

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1: Get Michael Gash and/or Adam Marriott back. Well, Gash left because he couldn’t commit to full-time football and Marriott is playing for Barnet and has only been out of their side until recently because of illness. Both ships have sailed: get over it. It’s romantic thinking, nothing more.   

2: Recall Joe Taylor, who is on dual registration with Wroxham, where he is scoring goals for fun. Make no mistake, Culverhouse knows exactly what Taylor is doing. But he’s scoring in the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division, not the National League. The gulf between the two is enormous – throw him in at the deep end at Lynn and if, as is likely, he doesn’t yet cut the mustard, what would that do to his confidence? Not much. 

Brett McGavin

Brett McGavin - Ipswich's loss is King's Lynn Town's gain - Credit: Ian Burt

Midfield maestros 

Culverhouse doesn’t appear to have any such worries in the middle of the park – although it does make you wonder what Brett McGavin has done to upset Ipswich boss Paul Cook. 

A week after his brilliant free-kick equaliser at Eastleigh, the Town loanee came up with a contender for pass of the season against Dagenham. From not too far inside the opposition half, he drilled a ball on to the boot of Ross Barrows in the Daggers’ area. Barrows was being a touch harsh on himself after the game when he said he should have scored – he’s a defender for starters - but when asked about the pass he just shook his head in the way that says ‘indescribable’. 

Ethan Coleman moves the ball

Ethan Coleman has been on top form for the Linnets - Credit: Ian Burt

McGavin, Joe Rowley and newcomer Zain Walker all impressed in spells, but the real standout performer once again was Ethan Coleman. Coleman provides great cover for the defence, but isn’t restricted, and is dangerous when Lynn attack. His passing is spot on, he’s aggressive and he is skilful – and that puts his own defenders’ minds at rest too. The backline has improved, no doubt – to the extent that Culverhouse was able to leave Kyle Callan-McFadden on the bench against Dagenham. 

If only he had a surfeit of strikers as well. 

Any other business? 

Of course there’s always an elephant in the room – and had Jumbo been at The Walks last Saturday he would have had acres of room in which to roam. 

Fewer than 900 fans were there for a game against the league leaders: not helped by the 5.20pm kick-off because the match was being shown live on BT. 

The owner has a pricing policy which some object to – but I suspect he’s blowing a hole in his playing budget at the moment so it’s understandable. It is also understandable if people don’t want to pay his prices. 

What is a concern is that people may have fallen out of love with football over the past 18 months when games were mostly played behind closed doors. 

It’s true to say that the first half against Dagenham was as good as it has been for a long time – that should be the best advertisement of all. 

And finally...

King's Lynn Town trip to Altrincham - postponed last Tuesday because of a coronavirus case in the home camp - has been re-arranged for Tuesday, September 28 (7.45pm).