So Mark Carrington’s appeal came to nothing and now we’ll begin to see whether the thinness of our squad is going to be an insurmountable obstacle this season.
The appeal was built on sound foundations as the accuracy of the referee’s description of the foul in his report is often what’s under scrutiny rather than the challenge itself. However, if we ignore the cynicism of Adam Cunnington, whose sly peep over his shoulder to check if he’d earned his fellow professional a dismissal, and look at the challenge without bias or emotion, you can see why the ref gave a red card.
Carrington’s absence for the next three games means the lack of experienced back-up in our squad will now be exposed. We’re entering a key run of games. Having gone through a fairly friendly start to the season without garnering the results we’d have hoped for, we now are in the midst of a testing sequence of games. Carrington’s replacement might get to introduce himself with a home match tomorrow, but the subsequent two matches will be testing: a trip to league leaders Barnet followed by the big derby at the Deva.
The man at the front of the queue is young Ross White. He made an admirable debut against Woking, but young lads naturally have lapses as they gain experience and White was twice beaten after being left exposed to the dangerous Dean Morgan, the second occasion leading to the winning goal. I really rate White, but throwing him into this sequence of games will be a real test for him.
The other alternative would be Steve Tomassen, but as he hasn’t even featured in the sixteen this season I’d have to assume he’s not going to get the nod. Tomassen might be more suited to playing at centre back, but he started last season as first choice right back and is perfectly capable of playing there. Indeed, bearing in mind our poor defensive record this season and the nature of our forthcoming matches, selecting a full back who is capable of defending the box might be a good idea.
I’m confused by the situation with Tomassen though. Having fallen behind White and Anthony Stephens-who started the season with one start at this level between them-in the pecking order it would seem his chances of advancing his Wrexham career are limited, making the decision to give him a contract in the Summer a peculiar one.
At least Carrington’s replacement will at least, one assumes, have the extra protection of a wide midfielder in front of him following the switch to 4-4-2 which has made our vulnerable defence look more solid over the last week. That extra level of security might be crucial as we see just how deep our squad is.