You can picture the scene in houses all around Yeovil. The alarm-clock rings and bleary-eyed, they stagger out of bed and run a hot bath to try to ease aching limbs reeling under the onslaught of four games in eleven days before yet another interminable journey oop north cooped up in a coach, with only an ipod and a rest stop at Strensham services to keep them sane... And that's just the supporters. Whatever must the players be feeling like?
If tomorrow is the 2nd day of the new year then it must be Doncaster up next, the last stop on the seemingly interminable Christmas fixtures express; a schedule that has seen the Glovers travel from Somerset to Merseyside, back down to Somerset and now all the way back up to darkest Yorkshire to take on old Conference rivals Doncaster Rovers, including, for the time being, former Glovers bad boy Michael McIndoe. I say for the time being because, as usual, rumours concerning Macca's future are legion and usually include mention of the words 'Celtic' and '500k'. Which is nice, because we get a sell-on fee as part of the original transfer deal which took Macca to Yorkshire after he had thrown his toys out of his pram and burned his bridges at Huish Park, not necessarily in that order. Of course there are always rumours surrounding McIndoe, most of them planted fresh that day by his agent, but this time it seems that there may just be no smoke without fire, though judging by our previous record with transfer sell-on fees he'll probably end up at somewhere like Crewe for a couple of mars bars and a packet of crisps and our sell-on windfall will be a Cadbury's cream egg, if we're lucky. No offence to Crewe fans intended naturally.
Doncaster are currently 13th in League One, 3 points ahead of the Glovers and with a game in hand. They've done themselves and the division proud lately by reaching the quarter-finals of the League Cup, beating Premiership sides Manchester City and Aston Villa along the way and coming within 30 seconds of knocking Arsenal out before eventually losing to the Gooners on penalties. Since that match, perhaps unsurprisingly, Donny have lost both of the league matches they have played, 4-0 at Nottingham Forest and a last-minute 1-0 defeat at local rivals Rotherham yesterday. At the time of writing there's little injury news to be had other than noting that first-choice defender Steve Roberts will definitely be missing - the Welshman was carried off at Millmoor yesterday with his legs strapped together and is expected to be out for weeks, if not months. Striker Paul Heffernanis also out - the former Bristol City forward was sent off for a second bookable offence yesterday and will accordingly be suspended for tomorrow's match.
As for Yeovil, defender Colin Miles will definitely be out after being taken to hospital yesterday after a clash of heads during the 1-1 draw with Bristol City. He has now been released from Yeovil Hospital but did not travel. David Poole has travelled, but with a slight unspecified strain and is doubtful for tomorrow. Midfielder Darren Way is not expected back before next Saturday's match at home to Hartlepool at the earliest. With the news that Dale Williams has now returned from his latest loan spell at Newport County then other than Miles and Way and possibly Poole the entire squad is available for selection. It's worth pointing out that tomorrow's match is the last of Liam Fontaine's loan spell, the defender returns to Craven Cottage on Tuesday.
Selected betting odds: Doncaster win - 8/11; draw - 12/5; Yeovil win - 10/3. Our recommendation: 10/3! At Donny?! Lump on boys... Record so far this season: +£3.63p.
For those of you who incredibly (a) haven't seen enough football this Christmas, and (b) haven't seen enough of the delights of Belle Vue full stop; and are intending to make the trip to the home of those dark satanic mills tomorrow, the Ciderspace guide to all things Doncaster is here.
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