Gloucester City currently sits in the dreaded relegation zone in the National League North but time may be against them with the season slowly coming to a close.
The question on the mind of the Tigers fans would be how on earth they have slipped so far down the table in the space of a season?
Last year the club managed a playoff push finishing seventh in the league on 68 points, narrowly losing out to Brackley Town 3-2 in their knockout fixture.
Despite winning two on the bounce, the Midlands side still sits 22nd in the league after losing 2-1 to King’s Lynn Town in a must-win game for the Tigers. Despite dominating most of the possession and chances in the first half, Mike Cooks’s side once again failed to uphold the momentum of the game, conceding two goals in the second half.
But for Gloucester fans, this is a story they have been through plenty of times. This season the club has had an awful track record of throwing away games right at the last stage of the match. The Tigers have dropped points in the last 15 minutes of a match in almost a third of their games this season.
On two separate occasions in January alone, Gloucester City managed to drop five points after going ahead by two goals in both fixtures. Games like these have cost the club dearly in this race to beat the drop with Cook saying in a recent interview; “this is the most inconsistent team I have ever coached.”
It was too long too late for Gloucester’s consolation goal after scoring in the dying moments of the game thanks to a Theo Robinson header.
The new forward now has three goals in three starts for the Tigers after joining halfway through January and looks to be a key player who can find the back of the net in these final stages of the season.
Injuries to the side will now play a big part in the teams fight for survival. All year round the club has been plagued with injuries forcing new lineups and partnerships more often than hoped for.
Cook’s side is already missing the likes of Harry Emmett, Josh Smile Jaime Reckford, Ben Richards-Everton and now vice-captain Joe Hanks after losing consciousness in a head-on-head collision and breaking his nose.
With big names out, the reliance is now down to some of the young loanees who have arrived from big-name clubs and the return of captain Spenser Hamilton.
Ben Beresford, Harry Leeson and Teddy Rowe all need to make an impact by stepping up to replace the regulars and show off to their parent clubs what they can do.
With that being said, Gloucester currently fights a losing battle in the great escape. With 15 games remaining and four points away from safety, form and consistency need to be found immediately otherwise it’s back to the South League Central division they go.
The Tigers travel to eighth place Chorley on Tuesday who got the better of them earlier in the season beating City 2-0.