I THOUGHT we played very well on Saturday; in my opinion, it was as good as I’ve seen us play this season.
Unfortunately, Nottingham Forest really went for it and boosted their goal difference against Scunthorpe, but we’ve still got the slightest inkling of hope in the bid to finish sixth, going into next Saturday’s game at QPR and we’ve taken things to the last day.
The good thing about Saturday is that the fans left after the last home game in a good mood and happy with what they had seen on the pitch.
If it’s not to be this year, Simon will improve the squad, although I think there will be a few comings and goings in the summer and he will look to add that little bit more quality, instead of quantity in time for next season if we don’t go up.
We wanted to take it to the last day and we’ve done that; that’s all you can ask.
You look at our run-in and we’ve always seem to be playing against a side who need something, whether they be fighting against relegation or aiming to get in the play-offs, but that’s just the nature of this division.
What you’ve got to do when you play teams at the bottom of the division is beat them. We went to Sheffield United and didn’t win for instance, which was a big blow. They are the type of games you have to win.
We worked hard on Saturday, passed the ball well and got in behind Burnley and the front two worked really well together, especially in the first half.
Ross McCormack was great; he’s a clever player and his movement was terrific. He got in behind their defenders and brought people into the game and dropped into that little ‘hole’ in front of their back four and he took his goal extremely well. That will be a really pleasing thing for Simon.
Since he’s been at the club, people have been asking about Ross and what he has got to offer. And when you get your opportunity, it’s about taking it and he hadn’t really took it previously.
On Saturday, he was playing up front in a role he enjoys off a traditional centre forward in Billy Paynter and he played very well.
Looking at the game as a whole, with the chances we had, we should have won the game by four or five goals. There were a couple of scrambles in our goal at the end, but overall, Simon will have been really pleased with how his players performed.
We looked solid and once again, the lads at the back did their job. Since Richard Naylor has been back in with Andy O’Brien, we’ve conceded one goal in three games, which is fantastic.
I know it’s ifs and buts, but you can look back and might think: ‘Well, if they had been playing earlier together...’ Similarly you could wonder what would have happened if Ross McCormack was given his opportunity earlier. But you just don’t know...
Simon picked a team to win the game and that was all we could do. We did our job and have got to rely on others to do us a favour now.
Simon made some big selection calls; he brought George McCartney back in and dropped Jake Livermore and brought Ross in. It doesn’t sound like Davide Somma was available, but I’ve a feeling Ross would have played anyway and the changes rewarded the manager.
But the changes worked, especially the move to bring in Ross, with his performance.
I thought Bradley Johnson, playing on the left-hand side of midfield, had a terrific game as well.
I think he’s had a great season and if I was tossing up for player of the year; although I think Max Gradel would have won it, I’d have picked Bradley next. He’s been that good.
Obviously, there’s a question mark over his future and that’s now down to the player, his agent and the club. We’ll just have to wait and see.