December 26th 2009 was our last game of the last decade and a game I remember very well. We beat Chesterfield 2-1, Jack Lester skying a late penalty that would have earned them a point. It really was a merry Christmas that year.
The writing was perhaps on the wall in that game with Brian Gilmour starting for us, as well as having four loan players in the side (Joe Heath, Nathan Baker, Chris Herd and Adam Watts). Michael Gordon (remember him? No? Oh) was on the bench too. It wasn’t a great end to the decade, a ten-year spell in which we’d been at death’s door, then fought back and made a record five successive play-off appearances without earning promotion.
We’d been a fourth-tier club throughout though and the next ten years couldn’t afford us the same luxury. In the time since we’ve won three trophies, been relegated once and promoted twice and got through six managers, with MA being our seventh. We’ve had players come and go too, but who would make a team of the decade?
Our Stacey West XI took a long while to do and I can’t go through that again, so over the course of the next week or so I’m going to put together a definitive Stacey West Team of the Decade. However, it might be useful for you to tweet your picks and reasons for doing so. Who would be in goal for your TOTD? Paul Farman for his longevity? Nick Townsend for being an ultra? Matt Gilks for being a top keeper?
What about in defence? Sean Raggett is sure to be involved, or is he? Jason Shackell began the decade as a Norwich City player, but would he partner Raggs? What about Bozzy, where would he fit in? We’re forgetting all about the colossus that was Patrick Kanyucka too…. decisions, decisions.
In midfield, it’s again a choice of ability over longevity. would your team be based purely on who was the best player, or who was best for the club? Joe Morrell or Alan Power? Scott Kerr or Alex Woodyard?
Up front, are you going to pick the highest goalscorer of the decade, or are you more interested in a fan favourite? Would it be Big Rheady getting the nod, or the only player to bag 20 in a season in the last ten years, Ben Tomlinson?
I’ll be putting my Team of the Decade together and revealing it through December, but who will you pick? Respond to this thread on Twitter, comment below and let me know who you think should be in and why.