Wednesday, 3 August 2011

League Two - Thoughts and predictions

I get the feeling that this could be one of the closest League Two promotion races for many a year.

Swindon will undoubtedly be a force. Di Canio simply wont let his team fail. At this level, with the players he's brought in and the determination of the whole squad to impress the new boss, it's difficult to see how the can fail to get promotion straight back up to League One.

Crawley have had huge amounts of money pumped into them over the last couple of seasons and with work underway on redeveloping at least one side of their stadium already, you have to feel that the money bag owners are in it for the long haul and not just for a 3 month, Sven Goran Eriksson & Sol Campbell signing exposé like Notts County.

My own hopes for Gillingham's promotion back to a slightly more glamarous league took a turn for the worse last week when Adam Birchall (our new 45 goal a season man) injured his cruciate knee ligaments on just his second substitute appearance and will be out for 6 months.. That said, we've made some excellent signings in Whelpdale & Lee from Peterborough and striker Danny Kedwell from AFC Wimbledon. If we're around the play off places by February/March when we hope to have Birchall back I think we could even make automatic promotion.

Speaking of AFC Wimbledon, many are tipping them to have a long hard season with relelgation a very realistic conclusion. I hope this isn't the case come May. I, along with many others, have followed closely the trials and tribulations of the new Wimbledon's rise back into the public eye and I was delighted to see them overcome a very determined Luton Town at the home of Manchster City in the Conference play off final last year. I think they'll finish mid table.

Bradford have massively under achieved over the past 4 seasons and it's a real shame to see a team of their stature with such an impressive stadium languishing around the lower echelons of the Football League. I dont see them challenging for automatic promotion this year but I fancy them to sneak into the play offs along with Shrewsbury and Torquay. The Shrews being the most dangerous of the three.

Southend have signed a large number of players over the summer and with a very talented (although personality lacking) manager, Paul Sturrock, at the helm I think a head of steam could see them storm up the table and clinch either a play off berth or, depending on the consistancy of the other front runners, maybe even a top 3 finish.

But who knows? I read every article, watch every live game and go to as many as I can but I can't guarantee a winner. No one can. And that's why we all love this game.


Winner - Swindon Town
Runner Up - Crawley Town
Third Place - Gillingham
Play Offs - Southend United
Play Offs - Bradford City
Play Offs - Shrewsbury Town
Play Offs - Torquay United
Relegation - Macclesfield Town
Relegation - Barnet

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