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Question of the Week
What should happen to the EFL Trophy next season?
By: Richard Hubbert
WITH the Christmas period now approaching, Town know that they must string some wins together to have any chance of promotion and improvements have to be made away from home, where this weekend, they travel to Brentford.
Brentford had a poor start to the season, losing all four of their first league and cup games. Dogged, like so many, by financial problems, the Bees, guided by Wally Downes, have got some decent results in the last few weeks including a 2-1 win at Tony Adams' Wycombe Wanderers. They now sit in 13th place and three points above Town.
Former member of Wimbledon's "Grazy gang" in the 1980s and 1990s, Downes was with the Dons for 12 years. After retiring after a fourth broken leg, he has been coaching and scouting for various clubs such as Nottingham Forest, Bury and Crystal Palace. He was appointed the Bees boss in June 2002 after the departure of Steve Coppell, and successfully guided the Bees to a mid table position this year. Has proved that he is capable of working on a small budget, and it seems that he will steer the Bees to yet another comfortable position in the division two table.
With 16 appearances in the Bees defence this year Ibrahim Sonko, provides determination and solidarity. The Senegalese born defender has formed a decent partnership with on loan Chelsea defender Joel Kitamirike who signed an extension to his loan until the end of the season earlier this week.
One player who has impressed this season with a haul of four goals, including the winner last week at Wycombe, is Jay Tabb. Tabb made his debut at 17 and has 13 starts this season compared to this previous two. He will replace Leicester City loanee Tommy Wright whose loan expired this week. Wright has gone away to represent England at the Fifa World Youth Championship in Dubai.
Also providing experience in this relatively inexperienced squad is former Reading forward Tony Rougier who is on a short-term contract with the club and also keeper Paul Smith who was the club's player of the year last season.
D Stockport 1-1
W QPR 1-0 (Cup)
L Rushden 1-3
D Barnsley 0-0
W Notts County 2-0
Currently 17th in Division 2
W Wycombe 2-1
L QPR 0-1
W Gainsborough 7-1 (Cup)
L Peterborough 2-3
W Barnsley 2-1
Currently 13th in Division 2
Boulding 10 Anderson 4
Hunt 7 Tabb 4 Rougier 4
Former Mariners goalkeeper Jason Pearcey made 23 appearances for the Griffin Park side between 1998 and 2000 before being forced to retire through injury.
Current Town utility man Jason Crowe had a nine game loan spell with the Bees in the 2000/01 season when he was with Portsmouth. Similarly, former Town striker Lee Nogan had a loan spell with Brentford in 1987 when he was playing for Oxford.
One man who signed for Town three times was Bob Taylor. Perhaps the best form of his career came at Brentford where he hit 56 goals in four years at the club with over 100 appearances. After spells with Scunthorpe and Cheltenham in the summer, Taylor retired this year after persistent injury problems.
1-0 to Town
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