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Nationwide Round-Up: Week 1

By: Richard Lord
Date: 12/08/2002

SO, it may have been a disastrous start for the Mariners at Norwich, but we can take heart from the fact that we are not at the bottom of the table (just yet)! It could be worse, we could be Millwall supporters.

Home > 2002-2003 Season > Round-Ups > Week One

It was interesting to witness that all three teams relegated from the Premiership last season all won, as they were expected to. The surprise result was obviously Rotherham's 6-0 win at Millwall.

Gary McAllister got his managerial career off to a winning start at home to Sheffield United. The good old Blades - now there's a team you know and trust when it comes to mid-table mediocrity (and a defeat of Grimsby).

It didn't come as a great surprise to me to hear news of Neil Warnock complain about a refereeing decision on the opening day of the season. Give it a rest Neil, nobody's perfect - and if you were, you'd have got United promoted by now!

Bobby Zamora The First Division newcomers Brighton had a very successful day up north at Burnley. Predictably Bobby Zamora (left) hit the back of the net and now the Seagulls will be hoping for a high finish.

But the one thing good to come out of that game was to see Lee Briscoe on the scoresheet. Only for the sheer fact that he is one of my chosen defenders in a Fantasy Football team, otherwise I couldn't have cared less about the scoreline.

Reading had a tough day at the office away to Derby. Two English players scored for Derby in one game. It must have been a while since that last happened. Maybe Ravanelli will be playing at Blundell Park this Saturday?

When will Nottingham Forest ever get it right? They are another team to put alongside Sheffield United in the "destined to go nowhere" category. I may yet be forced to eat my words - to be fair; they both faced tricky away ties.

Sheffield Wednesday didn't fail to deliver on their usual and accustomed middle-of-the-road start to the season. Before they know it they'll be amongst the bottom six, desperate to find some kind of form before the usual monotony kicks in.

Predictably, a striker named as a target for boss Paul Groves goes and does a job for his own team first. If I were a betting man, I would put my house on Kabba scoring against the Mariners when the two teams meet later this season.

Guy Ipoua Good old Gillingham, they do it every time. The moody and unpredictable former Iron striker Guy Ipoua (left) scored at Wimbledon, where there were more away fans than home fans.

But Wimbledon are a clever bunch. If you haven't noticed, they do this every season. An average start is followed by a good spell, then they go all average again, before picking it up too late and just miss out on the play-offs.

Bradford will be pleased with their home 0-0 draw with Wolves after wondering whether or not they would have a club at all to start the season with. I wonder if this will be the year Wolves will finally. perhaps not.

Best keeper outside the Premiership? Tony Warner. Best striker outside the Premiership? Neil Harris. Best midfielder outside the Premiership? Reid. Or so some of us were told. That's the last time I ever listen to and act upon information given out by opposition fans. That's right, all three went into my Fantasy Football team on that basis (and I have a £5 bet that I will do better than the Physhio).

As for the League Table, it looks worrying familiar (if we just forget about the top and bottom teams for now). Sheffield United, Walsall, Watford, Nottingham Forest and ourselves already look like we are settling ourselves down for the season.

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