IF Carl Fletcher did not invoke the Spirit of Irthlingborough 2001 during Argyle’s staggering come-from-behind win at Morecambe......there were plenty who are now prepared to believe that the Globe Arena might have witnessed something similar.
Rushden & Diamonds 2 Argyle 3 is a result that has gone down in folklore as the ultimate Pilgrims’ tide-turner.
After a poor start to the 2001-02 campaign, the Pilgrims went two-behind to the Diamonds before rallying to win 3-2 – nine months later, they were Nationwide Division 3 champions.
While it might be fanciful to suggest that those studmarks can be trod in exactly, could Saturday’s similar victory by the same score be a season-changer?
“I don’t see why not,” said Fletch afterwards.
“We spoke about the results this season maybe not reflecting the performances this season, but it is what it is. It’s a long season and we will keep plugging away.
“We’ll have good games and bad games, and wins, defeats and draws, but if we keep believing in each other and stay together as a group as we did today, we’ll have no problems.”
Keep believing. It is a familiar refrain, but one that stands up to the closest scrutiny.
“They believe in what they are doing,” said Fletch, about his players. “You could see that by the way they kept the ball.
“I don’t know what the possession stats were but they must have been fairly high, and we were playing penetrating football.
“We came in at half-time and said we felt we dominated the game.
“Individual mistakes meant we went 2-0 down but, in general performance and overall play, I thought we were in control.
“Maybe we had a bit of a dodgy spell after we went 2-0 down, but the lads stuck to their beliefs and we got the win.”
Argyle put themselves behind the eight-ball after conceding a fourth-minute goal following some indecisive defending, and were in further trouble early in the second half when they gave away a penalty.
“Both goals were mistakes,” said Fletch. “Goals usually come from three or four mistakes but today it was a couple of individual mistakes.
“Yes, we have got to eradicate individual errors, but everyone makes mistakes, so you just get on with it. No-one wants to make a mistake, but sometimes it happens.
“It made [the victory] a lot harder work than maybe it should have been from our performance.”