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Nolan: Gap to Safety is Bridgeable
Thursday, 13th Dec 2018 17:49

Town’s league position is currently anything but healthy but midfielder Jon Nolan believes there is enough time left to bridge the daunting eight-point gap between themselves and Championship survival.

Nolan has forced his way into new boss Paul Lambert’s starting line-up and is likely to continue in his central role when newly-promoted Wigan, where ex-manager Joe Royle is a director and his son Darren chairman, come to Portman Road on Saturday.

“The attitude here is still positive,” said Nolan. “It’s down to the new management team because since they came in it’s been positive all around the place and it’s spot-on.

“We’re bottom of the league but you’d never think it. Everyone’s attitude has been amazing really and we have a good bunch of lads here. I just hope we can soon start to pick up points.

“I’d say there is quite a gap between League One and the Championship. But Wigan started the season well and obviously I know all about them because I played against them last year.

“They are a good team and in Paul Cook they have a good manager. I know what they will bring but we just need to concentrate on our own game.

“We’re just looking at each game as it comes along and in the position we’re in they are all must-win to be honest. We’ve got to start picking up points.”

Nolan has been impressed by the impact made by Lambert, even if the ex-Norwich boss has accumulated just two points from his six games in charge so far.

“The training is good and he’s got a clear, clear way of how he wants us to play,” he said. “We watch the analysis after games and he’s shown us how well we are doing in games compared to the opposition. All the lads are buying into it. We just need a bit of luck and to cut out the mistakes.

What’s it going to take to turn the draws and defeats under Lambert into wins? Nolan added: “It’s all about putting the ball in the back of the net. We’re creating chances but maybe when the games are tight we’ve been conceding sloppy goals from mistakes.

“We just need to cut that out and stay in the game for as long as possible, and then I think the wins will come.

“Nobody is panicking. Chambo said something the other day that I picked up on. He said ‘If you were eight points off the play-offs at Christmas you’d be thinking you could get in there’. It’s not over. We’ve got loads of games left.

“The gaffer has said he will be bringing a few players in during January and I think we’ll need that. But I’m hoping things start to turn on Saturday.”

Nolan explained why he had not featured under Lambert until coming off the bench in the 2-0 defeat at Nottingham Forest and then starting against Stoke when Town went down by the same scoreline last weekend.

He said: “After the gaffer came in I picked up a dead leg, which I think was only in our third training session under him. It was a phantom dead leg – I’ve no idea who did it to me – but when I went home that day it just ballooned up.

“I was out for two and a half to three weeks, which killed me, because you are obviously looking to impress the new manager straight away.

“When I got fit again the other players were far more accustomed to his ideas, what he was putting across and how he wanted us to play.

“It was a bit of a nightmare, but lately I’ve been doing well in training and when I played against Stoke last week I felt I’d done alright. Now that I’m fit I’m looking to get more game time.

Has it been tough making the transition from Shrewsbury? “I suppose the proof is in the pudding – we’re bottom of the league,” he continued.

“But I think it’s been tough for all of us. As a team, a lot of us have come from the league below or an even lower division.

“But we’re all good players and the new gaffer has a clear way of playing, and I think the lads are doing well with it. If we can get a win on Saturday will give us all a huge lift.”

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ruds added 18:26 - Dec 13
He's here, he's there, he's no better than his hair JON NOLAN!!!

ITFCsince73 added 20:22 - Dec 13
Yet another player to come out saying gap is bridgeable. As the gap gets bigger by the week. 20% of the squad have, it seems, at long last upped there game. 80% haven’t. 40% of those aren’t capable even if they really tried to.

guentchev added 20:44 - Dec 13
If we don't start picking up points immediately we will start hearing across the country "you're going down with the Ipswich". If that hasn't happened already....

Taricco_Fan added 21:13 - Dec 13
I think we need 20 pts on the board by New Year to stand any chance of survival. Even if we beat Wigan on Saturday I can't see us getting much out of Sheff Utd, QPR and Boro.

We need to find play-off form ASAP and I don't see the quality in this squad to do that.

ITFCsince73 added 21:16 - Dec 13
Yes BillyBaxterwasbest. I can see by the user name you understand and appreciate what is expected of any town player. Doesn’t have to be the best ability wise, but gives 100% to the shirt. 100% to the club. 100% of the time. As my comment above, you must also be as p****d off as me with the current rabble. Half hearted at best,half the time.

Dissboyitfc added 22:02 - Dec 13
Tarrico fan if you at lasts season's table Bolton stayed up with 43 points, we need around 34/5 points for safety and with 25 games to go we will need to find mid table form to survive. If we get some goals into this team,and cut out those costly mistakes mid table form can be achieved.

ITFCsince73 added 22:24 - Dec 13
Dissboyitfc agree. But on current trend, to reach that mid table form would need Freddie to continue to the form of his life and evolve onto being one of the higher scorers in the league. Spence to never play for town again. Chambo dropped. This, minimum, to stand any chance.
Just can’t see any of the above happening.

Warkys_Tash added 22:43 - Dec 13
Dissboy, I also agree but these are the facts. This time last season after 20 games we were 7th with 32 points. Now here the the more relevant facts

Bottom 3 were Sunderland 14pts, Burton A 14pts, Birmingham 16pts.. 2 went down only 1 survived from that group..

Birmingham had 5 more points than we have now an finished with 46pts.

However, I agree with Chambers, one team makes a surge for the play-offs every year - We need to make a surge for 4th from bottom. It is possible. None of the bottom 7 are ripping it up but in the past 4 games have nicked 1 point here and there, and as you know we got nothing.

bobble added 03:13 - Dec 14
we need a new defense and a new attack and a new midfield and a miracle or 10

Dissboyitfc added 08:52 - Dec 14
Warky's Tash, great post... i cant accept the inevitability that league 1 is looming and may well be the outcome for this season. I want to remain positive that we can achieve mission impossible!


drewcudders1963 added 09:04 - Dec 14
We can reach at least 4th from bottom (hardly aspirational but realistic in view of current plight) as there are at least 4 teams at least as poor as us at present, plus everyone seems to keep beating each other or drawing and apart from the top few no-one seems to be any better than anyone else.... so long as the players are putting in 100% I am behind them.... except Knudson and Spence who simply must be dropped... we'll get nowhere with those jokers in the team....

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