BROWNE ON THE BALL: Has Boston United’s Plan B been left in the dugout?

Jason Lee celebrates his goal at Histon last season.
Jason Lee celebrates his goal at Histon last season.

Boston United are like the little girl who had a little curl, right in the middle of her forehead.

When they’re good they are very, very good. But when they are bad, they are horrid.

So far this season, they have dominated Droylsden, hammered Histon and battered the Bay.

But sandwiched in between those have been four consecutive defeats, which were all about as shocking as the electric chair.

For me personally, this comes down to one thing. Boston’s strategy.

Following last Tuesday’s defeat at Oxford City, Ian Ross stated that manager Jason Lee and his assistant Graham Hyde were not to blame.

He said the gaffer sent out a team that was more than good enough to do the job, and it was the players that let the side down.

In a sense, he is correct. The gaffers sent out a team which is good enough to do the business against Droylsden, Histon and Colwyn Bay.

Droylsden were caught out by their own insistence on playing passing football from the back. On the day they weren’t good enough to do that and put themselves under constant pressure.

Colwyn Bay are out of form and were shell-shocked after Weir-Daley’s blink-and-you-missed it finish.

Histon. Well, they’re poorer than a church mouse who is a degenerate gambler and forgot to consolidate all his bills into one easy and manageable monthly payment.

But against the likes of Hinckley (physically too strong man for man) and Workington (who rode their luck, had an in-form keeper and defended with their lives) Boston didn’t have an answer.

When Plan A doesn’t work, there is no-longer a Plan B. Following the defeat to Oxford, some fans had had enough. They booed. They tweeted. They took to messageboards demanding the manager be axed.

Despite chairman David Newton not being present at that fixture (and not being a man to act on a whim) Lee still took the step of telling the press he was not quitting his post.

I admire his will against the boo boys. I also admire his strong headedness to keep on with the same tactics which have earned nine points to date. But I disagree with his stubbornness in not switching things around.

At the start of the season, the boss said it was time to hang his boots up. He could have more of an impact from the sidelines, he said.

But can he? Like it or lump it, at 41 years of age, Jason Benedict Lee is still one of the Blue Square Bet North’s best target men.

He may not have the legs of those younger players around him. But he has a CV most footballers around the world would dream of, a will to win that very few can match and the physical presence that would make plenty of defenders at this level suddenly wish they had brought their crash helmet when they see his name on the teamsheet.

Hoofball, the art of pumping the ball long to a target man, is to football what the X Factor is to good music.

It’s rubbish to watch and doesn’t best use the skills on offer from playmaker Ian Ross.

But flipping heck, when you’re a goal down with 10 minutes to go, it ain’t half effective.

Last season Lee proved he still had it, grabbing seven goals, while fellow target man Jordan Burrow grabbed a couple during his brief loan. And with Marc Newsham and Spencer Weir-Daley about to poach the scraps, humping the ball long is a tactic that could still be utilised this campaign.

Jason Lee wants to mould himself into Jason Lee the manager this season. But whether he likes it or not, I still believe his success could be measured by whether he can get the best out of Jason Lee the player.