Very much a week for reflection and anticipation.
First up, reflecting on a never-to-be forgotten week for everyone at Worthing FC.
Personally, there is a slight caveat for me. Due to family holiday commitments, I was at Walt Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Orlando rather than Woodside Road, but I’ve never enjoyed a game so much on Twitter and Facebook and doubt I ever will again!
I publicly stated back on March 31, at the Matt Hurley appreciation evening, that I believed Jon and Gary would not only qualify for the play-offs but win them.
Not exactly Nostradamus, just merely belief in two great young managers who I believe have the ability, drive and ambition to take the club to levels above and beyond the Ryman Premier League.
Back in March, it was not a belief necessarily shared by everyone, and it’s somewhat ironic that one supporter who enjoyed the rapturous scenes on Saturday was on the fans’ internet forum not that long ago stating that the first team didn’t have the stomach for a fight!
In analysis, you can peel all the layers away from the club’s recent success to find the common denominator and that is George Dowell.
Speaking as one of the few in the ‘before’ and ‘after’ camps, quite simply without him there would be no club.
Various circumstances over the years, be it mismanagement or bad luck, had created a situation from which there would have been no return.
I have previously stated that in December, 2015, there was a period of a week or so when I genuinely believed that the club would not survive to the end of January 16, let alone the end of the season.
Thankfully, George came in, saved the club and with further investment has given the Rebels a bright future, starting with next season’s campaign in the Ryman Premier.
Events away from Woodside Road this weekend are also a factor, and the big question this weekend is can the Albion win at Middlesbrough, and make it to the Premier League?
Honest answer, yes, I firmly believe. While it will be an extremely tight and tense game, providing the Albion score first they will go on to get all three points and get the automatic promotion that comes with it, not to mention the estimated £200million TV revenue.
As was proved on Saturday and Monday respectively, when they are not directly up against each other, the fans will turn out in serious numbers for both Worthing and the Albion.
If the Albion do it, and then the respective home fixtures don’t clash for the majority of the season, then I firmly believe, with the plans the Rebels management team have in place, the club will start to realise its obvious potential and will regularly get gates approaching four figures.
A far cry from when a Ryman South home fixture not that long ago attracted a gate of under 150.
So, while last Saturday was all about the Rebels, this Saturday all eyes will be on the Riverside, again light years away from May, 1997, when the Albion faced relegation from the Football League in the last game of the season.
Exciting times ahead for the Rebels and the Seagulls...
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