The team with the most home defeats takes on the team with the most away wins in League Two at St James’ Park this afternoon and if ever there was a time Exeter City needed to upset the odds, it is today.
As a long and at times arduous season reaches the final straight, every team in the division will feel they still have something to play for, such is the closeness of it this campaign.
However, it is the battle for survival occupying the thoughts and minds of the Grecians right now after a shocking end to 2013, which has continued throughout 2014 so far.
After the stunning 4-0 win at Scunthorpe United, who are now second in the division, the Grecians have won only three of their subsequent 26 matches, which is frankly relegation form.
Goals have been in short supply, soft goals conceded have been a source of great frustration and the less said about home form the better as fed-up fans have made their feelings known by staying away, refusing to renew season tickets and being rather vocal in their displeasure at the end of recent matches.
It all paints a pretty unhappy and unhealthy picture at St James’ Park right now, but while City have been in this position before, it somehow feels different this time around.
Back in 2003, when Exeter lost their Football League status, they did so amid the turmoil of unlawful ownership. This time, supporters feel betrayed by the ownership, their very own people in the form of the Supporters’ Trust.
However, what Gary Peters was able to do in 2003 was galvanise the club. He came in, won five and drew five of his 13 games in charge and everyone seemed to be focused on the one goal: to maintain Exeter’s Football League status.
Despite that run of results, it was in vain with City going down on the last day of the campaign, but surely the time has now come for the club to unite as one once more and join together for the greater cause?
Yes, the goals and wins at home are in short supply, but the team needs the support of the fans more than ever.
Paul Tisdale may not be your ideal man to lead the team, but he needs the supporters’ backing as well.
St James’ Park has to become a place of positivity and not somewhere the players dread to walk and reluctant to play their natural game for fear of making mistakes.
Today’s clash with Fleetwood Town marks the first of five huge games remaining at the Park this campaign and Exeter’s home form must improve of they are to stand any chance of survival.
The fans have been absolutely fantastic in supporting the team during games in recent weeks, even in times of adversity, and it is important that is maintained. After all, no one wants a return to the Conference, do they?