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View from the dressing room with Brett Donnelly

Tuesday, January 30 2018

This week Brett gives his uncompromising views on the performances against Kings Lynn and Boreham Wood. It is good to have such honest views! He then moves on to talk about his brother Callum and it is a really thoughtful piece.

He apologised to me for the length of his article this week but as he said "there was lots to get out".

"Firstly let me start with Saturday's debacle!!! After the poor performance against Biggleswade, we had 2 weeks to dwell on it. This didnít help as after a performance like that you want to get back on the pitch and get it out of your system. Sadly the weather didnít allow us to do that. So we turned up Saturday against a side going well in the league but one we thought we could beat. How wrong were we! 13 players turned out on Saturday and only one of them, young Jack James, could walk off feeling they had done enough.

From MJ at the back to myself who came on up top no one else showed anything like their best. Low on confidence, maybe, but the lack of work rate as a team was worrying. What I mean is we used to get the ball back quickly by pressing in 2ís, 3ís and 4ís. This is missing at the moment. The new lads need to recognise what we like to do. The boys who have been here a while, Webby, Camel (Rolfe), Belly (Walster), Lucas, Macca, Josh and myself have to raise our standards to where they were.† Burkey will tell anyone who cares to listen, weíve built our success on working harder than every team we come up against. This season we havenít done that. But it is something we can address. The lack of goals is most concerning. I put it down to the fact I havenít been available as much over the last 6 weeks due to suspension and injury!!!!

But on a serious note, I firmly believe most teams have a 3 year cycle. When I rejoined in 2015, we finished just outside the play offs. Then there were 2 play off pushes.† Teams have used us as a blueprint. This year with players going, Burkey and Parks have had to start again. Replacing the likes of Kane, Lenchy, Will Wright† and Burnsy is a tough ask. But we arenít far off, and this group of boys want success. Saturday was an eye opener for us all. There was an element of shock in the dressing room. We have been slapped a few times this season and it is not a nice feeling considering we arenít used to losing by more than one goal prior to this season. In the bar after we all sat down we had an open chat about what is going wrong and what we need to do to sort it out. No shouting, or digging out (maybe a little, sorry Trey and Macca) but I want the fans to realise that it bothers us, more than I think you imagine.

So on Monday Boreham Wood came to town. They owed us one! In my opinion it was a vastly improved performance but we concede 3 goals we could & should have dealt with better. To play a professional side is hard work, we didnít embarrass ourselves but the result wasnít what we wanted. However it puts us in a better frame of mind for Saturday. On a personal note, it was good to get minutes, but I was disappointed to miss the chance at the end. WE WILL SCORE AGAIN I PROMISE!!

Last week Roy asked me for my views on playing with my happy go lucky little brotherÖÖ. Most of my views wouldnít be printable! It is hard playing with family, especially my family as there is a fierce competitiveness between us. We hate to lose and Cal is the world's worst loser! My first season back he was brilliant. He made things happen, worked hard and created chances. The last 18 months he wasnít the same and† I told him this. He had got too comfortable here and had gone stale. We had some almighty rows, mainly because he hated not being at the level he expected himself to be at. He would take it out on others and I would stick up for the other guy!! I said to him at the end of last season that maybe it was time for a new challenge. With hindsight he would begrudgingly agree. But he rightly deserves any praise he gets from the Hitchin fans because although he is a massive pain in the backside he loves this club and has given his lot for it.

Callum scores against Royston

From a family point of view, it is nice to have some success together for our home town club. I am sure if you ask the old man after a few beers if he enjoyed seeing his boys playing at Top Field in a decent side he might give us a little bit of praise, but donít hold your breath. As for me and Cal, we are close but in the changing room we stayed away from each otherÖ who wants their little brother following him around!

My favourite memories were the cup wins, the play offs, the coach trips taking his money and watching him single-handedly wind up a whole team, management, town and county inside the first 5 minutes of any away game!! But the best (for wrong reasons) was in our pre-season friendly at home to Hendon. Both of us got involved in a skirmish and got sent off after 70 seconds. As we sat down in the dressing room both shaking our heads, our dad walked in and gave us a telling off! He left and we looked at each other and laughed!! What a couple of prats!!!

Anyway thanks for reading my waffle and let us hope this weekend we can forget about January 2018!!!†

Donners/Digger"

Thanks again to Brett for giving up his time to give supporters a great insight from inside the dressing room.




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