Sears: Now We're Probably Looking at the Play-Offs
Thursday, 13th Feb 2020 16:02
Striker Freddie Sears admits the Blues are probably now looking at the play-offs rather than automatic promotion.
Town are currently seventh in League One without a win in their last four with leaders Rotherham seven points ahead of the Blues with a game in hand and second-placed Peterborough a point behind the Millers having played one match more than Town.
Sears, who was helping out with an adult disability football session to promote Community Trust Day on Saturday, was asked how he saw the promotion picture as things stand.
“Good question,” he reflected. “It’s mad how a week can change things. I think three or four games ago we were top of the league and if we’d have beaten Rotherham you probably would have thought that we were going to win this league hands down.
“But now we’re probably looking at the play-offs. Obviously we’d love to be in the automatic promotion places but we’ve got to start winning games.
“There’s no point in standing there saying what we want to do and what we don’t want to do, if you don’t win games you don’t deserve to be there. I think the play-offs are the aim and we’ll go from there.”
He added: “Before you know it it’ll be May and will we be looking back thinking ‘What a waste of a season’ or we’ll be thinking we’ve made the play-offs or even better than that, hopefully.
“I think we’ve got nine home games which are going to be massive. We’ve not really been great at home but if we can get something going, give the fans something to cheer about, I’m sure they’ll back us.
“And that’s the most important thing now, playing positively and we need results and we need them sooner rather than later.”
Since returning from the ACL injury he suffered at Norwich a year ago this month, Sears has made one Leasing.com Trophy start and six appearances from the bench in League One.
He admits the current wing-back system hasn’t helped his return, the 30-year-old having played on the left of a front three last season prior to his injury following Paul Lambert’s appointment.
“At the minute we’ve not got too many wingers so the system’s probably suited us in that way,” he said.
“But for me, I either want to play up front or a front three, right or left. It’s tough at the minute because Danny Rowe’s injured, there have been a few injuries and the wingers we had at the start of the season haven’t been able to play.
“It’s a different system, everyone seems to be getting used to it but we’ll see what happens on Saturday.”
Looking back to last season, Sears enjoyed a good spell after Lambert took over before picking up his injury in which he netted six times.
“It was the best I’ve played in a long time,” he recalled. “But I still think my best spell here was when I played up front in a two with Daryl Murphy. My best football, the most I’ve enjoyed football, to be honest.
“It is what it is, I’ll play anywhere but I’d like to play up front but at the minute I’m not seen there.”
Quizzed on where Lambert has said he’ll look to use him, Sears added: “I think I’ll be used up front but it’s tough at the minute, we’ve got Jacko, Nors, Keano as well.
“The thing that probably kills me is the flexibility where I can go out there and play and probably, and no disrespect to Keano or Nors, but they’re not going to be steaming up and down the wings. But wherever I’m asked to play, I’ll play and try and give the best I can for the team.”
Sears even ended up as a wing-back at Wimbledon the other night, although he says that’s not something he wants to repeat even if it was with a primarily attacking remit.
“I don’t want to be stuck there, to be honest,” he laughed. “It was more of an attacking sort of thing, there wasn’t too much defending, there was a little bit, but it was mainly to try and get the win. It wasn’t as bad as what it was. It is what it is and I’ll play wherever.”
Given Town’s recent lack of a cutting edge and his record of scoring under Lambert last season and also in League One with Colchester prior to joining Town, he must feel he will get a chance up front soon.
“It’s obviously down to the manager,” he said. “But the boys have done well this year, Nors has done well, Jacko’s done well, Keano’s done well, they’ve all scored goals.
“I’ve been out a long while, which is obviously the issue at the minute. I’m sure if I was fit and firing I’d be playing every week, and that’s no disrespect to anyone at the football club. I believe if I was in the form I was in last year, I’d be playing every game.
“It’s a different circumstance a little bit at the minute because if I was in the situation I was in last year and I wasn’t playing it would probably be a bit different where I wouldn’t be as happy. I’m not saying I’m happy at the minute but I understand the situation.”
Are the club management having to put the reins on him to an extent as he continues his recovery?
“I don’t know,” he admitted. “It’s been a long time and now we need results, there’s no Leasing.com Trophy games like there were before where I probably would have played three or four of them and there would have been no complaints and I’d probably be up to speed. Now the games matter and I feel like I’m ready and only time will tell.”
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