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Found out today that the club's main sponsor, Loans.co.uk, have agreed to sponsor the dinner, which is great news! Had a short de-brief, then out to train. Went to watch Dychey play for Northampton against Wycombe Wanderers at Sixfields. Ended as a 0-0 draw but quite an entertaining one! Tommy Mooney hit the post for Wycombe, for who Clint Easton was also playing.
Day off. Had another game of golf! In the evening we had a testimonial meeting at our house to do more planning for the up coming dinner. Late night!
In for a warm down at 8.45am. Ryan's game had been called off but Natasha had a netball match which she won. I managed to get back and watch. Spent the rest of the day at home and had a roast!
Get a phone call from Ben as I am heading down the M1 to say that he has failed his fitness test and I am playing! Game goes well, after an early scare where Springy does really well to deflect a shot on to the crossbar. We then go on and dominate the game, scoring freely and the only disappointment is conceding a late goal.
Out in the evening at the local Esporta for a "Burns' Night". Had a good evening, the haggis was great!
After a meeting about Crewe, we go out and train. Play an 11 v 11 in which we work on all set pieces and then have some 8 v 8 games to finish. During one of the last games, Ben saves a shot with his feet and hurts his ankle. He limps off the training ground and I'm on standby!
Back to London Colney today as we start to prepare for the Crewe game.
Trained at Borehamwood's ground which has an artificial pitch next door as it was forecast a heavy frost again. The reserve game tonight against Leicester eventually gets called off to save Leicester travelling. Martin Hunter, who is England U-19's manager, took most of the training session.
In training for a de-brief on the Norwich game. Went outside afterwards but still frosty so most of the team went back into the gym to do a circuit while the goalkeepers found a decent area to do some work.
Day off. Played golf for the first time since October but it was freezing! Out in the evening to celebrate our friend Mark being 40. He thought he was having a romantic evening with his wife Jo but we turned up with another couple to help him celebrate!
Warm down and back up to see Ryan win 4 - 0 and score 2 goals himself.
Great game which we were behind in twice but showed great character to fight back and win it in the last minute. The locals were not happy! Got back about 9 and joined Jane at friend's for dinner where we had a Derby supporter and Coventry supporter so that made interesting conversation bearing in mind Derby lost 6 -1 to Coventry that day.
Trained and travelled to Norwich. Stayed in nice hotel with a golf course on it (if only)!
Training in the morning. Had our friend Peter Jones join us for tea and catch up.
To training from Ben's flat so did not miss M1 this morning!
Trained hard in the morning and then watched Brentford v Notts Forest in the evening with the manager and we had our "scouting" hats on!! Stayed overnight at Mr Foster's flat.
Off but went to watch Wooldale under 8's play Watford under 8's development centre from Milton Keynes at local school here.
In for a warm down. Back to see Ryan's game. First game back after Christmas and it shows as the lads struggle to get to grips with the game and it ends goalless. Meantime another victory for Natasha's netball team - the Christmas break does not appear to have affected the netballers!
Stoke City. Good win and another 3 points. Clean sheet for Ben who had a solid game against his old club. 6 points against Stoke so good team for us. Out in the evening with Rob Bailey and his wife Rachel. Rob helped me provide the gifts for the players at my game. He is from Stoke so he came to the game with his son Harry and was not impressed with the result! Rob used to be a professional cricketer with Northants and England and is now umpiring on the first class list this season coming.
Avoid any accidents as Friday 13th! Trained and got home to spend the afternoon fetching Ryan from school.
In for training as we start to prepare for the Stoke City game. In the evening, we have a Testimonial Committee meeting at our house. Plenty to discuss with the dinner next month.
In for another practice match with the youth team. Some of the trialists from last week are back again and do well. The u-18's are preparing for their FA Youth Cup game against Millwall next week.
In for training and de-brief the Bolton game. Get back to see the kids come home from school. After an early dinner, I take Ryan training with Watford at Milton Keynes.
Ryan's game is called off which is a shame. Tasha has a netball match so we all go and watch her play very well. In a good team display they won 25-6! Our friends, The Brock's, travel up from Reading for Sunday dinner with us. Watch the Burton Albion v Man United game - great result for Burton.
Poor performance and result. Enough said! After the game travel to Letchworth and spend the evening with the Harvey's. I used to play with Richard at Luton. Watch the second half of the Luton v Liverpool game. Have a bite to eat with them and finally get home just before midnight. Ryan sleeps all way home!
All back in for training to prepare for the FA Cup game against Bolton.
Most of the pro's are still off today but I decided to go in and actually play in a practice match with the youth team. We have a few trialists in to look at in a match situation.
Day off! Get a rare game of golf in! First game since October, and it showed! Met up with Mark and Jo later that evening for a drink.
In for a de-brief. The players who played do a warm down while the rest of us have a good work out! Ben Foster and his girlfriend, Kate, come up to Northampton and we go for a nice meal.
Derby Day! Report early at the training ground for breakfast. Then it is the short coach journey to Kenilworth Road. We pick up the police escort at junction 10 and see all the Watford coaches. They are certainly up for it! The first half goes really well and we are 2 up by the break! The second half is trickier and we concede after 5 minutes. Then Ashley gets sent off so it's a rear guard action to hang onto the points. I thought I was coming on as Ben got injured making a fantastic save from Steve Howard. However when Al Bangura gets injured we have to make the third substitution so I sit down again! The fans have been great throughout the game and are obviously delighted when the final whistle goes! I think the players were quite pleased too!
Report at Vicarage Road for a warm down and to de-brief the Palace game. Have a good meeting and leave the ground very positive about playing Luton tomorrow.