By Joel Lampkin
The triumphant return of Scott Davies from a severe injury was supposed to be a symbol of positivity for Tranmere Rovers but a costly mistake has seen the goalkeeper come under fire from The Super White Army, but abuse is the last thing the 30-year-old deserves.
While fans reserve the right of fair criticism, the judgement of the Rovers no.1 has been unfair, with the shot stopper’s recent blunders outweighing his ability that has resulted in him accumulating 32 clean sheets over two seasons.
Despite Davies’ mistakes, his work behind the scenes is one that few fans get to see and young prodigy Paddy Wharton is someone who looks up to the former Fleetwood Town man as he praised his ability between the sticks.
What is unfair about his recent criticism is that, a striker can make up for a missed opportunity within moments, while a goalkeeper may not have get the chance, resulting in an easy target for comment.
The old saying that you must be mad to be keeper is one that qualifies here and the difficulty of the position is one that many industry experts feel is underrated in the modern game.
Davies however made four saves in Tranmere’s last home game against Macclesfield, keeping the scoreline respectable, but his efforts were overshadowed by a mistake that handed The Silkmen the lead just inside the second half.
The former Morecambe man temporarily deleted his Twitter account following a torrent of abuse from fans, showing how some remarks have impacted him on a personal level.
Not the first time. I still blame him for the playoff defeat.
— Dan (@trfcdan86) February 20, 2018
Scott Davies was originally supposed to play Kevin Costner’s role in The Bodyguard – but the director scrapped it; as he thought it was inconceivable he’d block a shot from over 20 yards
— Not Total Tranmere (@NotTotalTRFC) February 20, 2018
Morning to everyone except Scott Davies and Liam Ridehalgh
— Joey Davies (@theonejoeyd) February 21, 2018
Rovers narrowly defeated Maidstone United, however, an error by Davies allowed the home side to take the lead with the keeper’s current form a possible reflection of his confidence.
With 37 goals conceded in 36 games, The Super Whites boast the fifth best defensive record in the league, a figure that should be looked upon with hope rather than pessimism.
In a campaign were injuries have threatened to disrupt any sort of title challenge, Davies is one of just a handful of players to have made over 30 appearances this season.
A consistent line up has been hard to come by and the rocky form of Rhys Taylor has only furthered the need for the no.1 to return to the XI.
As Rovers remain in the hunt for automatic promotion, fans should back Davies to get back to his best rather than look to pick out his mistakes.
With 10 games left, it is still a mathematical possibility for Tranmere to clinch the National League title, but with a keeper low on confidence the chance of that come may are very far away.