Milestones mean more to some footballers than others but I'd hazard a guess that Exeter City's veteran striker Jamie Cureton is very much looking forward to reaching the 200 goal mark the next time he hits the back of the net for the Grecians.

It's a very special achievement for any centre forward to get to 200. I passed it in my playing days and was extremely proud to do so, and after getting to 199 with his winner at Rochdale last weekend I imagine Jamie will be eager and excited to notch up his next goal as quickly as he possibly can, perhaps on Saturday in the West Country derby with Yeovil Town.

I've always rated Jamie Cureton highly. He's been around for a long, long time and has scored goals everywhere he's been. I liken him closely to Kevin Phillips both in stature and in his style of play because they are natural opportunists in front of goal. Whether the ball bounces awkwardly, comes at them over their shoulder or any which way it arrives they think quicker than most defenders and find a way to hit the target. They know where the goal is. Jamie's been a tremendous pro so I wish him lots of luck in joining the 200 Club as soon as possible!

While I was away in Brunei at the weekend it seemed my friend, Carlisle United manager Greg Abbott, was enduring one of those horrible afternoons that managers occasionally have to face up to in their 6-0 thrashing at Peterborough United. By the sound of things it could have been even worse for the Cumbrians as Posh ran riot.

Darren Ferguson's return to London Road was an eyebrow raiser at the time but it seems to be working well for the club. His side are right in the groove, scoring goals for fun and just as importantly not leaking anywhere near as many as they were at the back. They say you should 'never go back' but Darren Ferguson is doing his best to buck that trend!

Around Peterborough United in the promotion shake up are a bunch of teams that all seem strong enough to go up. Not so long ago the division was wide open but that's changed now with the top seven stretching away from the pack leaving off form Charlton Athletic, Colchester United, Sheffield Wednesday and Oldham Athletic pretty much out of the hunt.

The battle between MK Dons and Leyton Orient for that final play-off place looks the most exciting at the moment. Both teams are on fire, looking every inch promotion material. Leyton Orient will look at their four games in hand and believe they can overhaul the eight point deficit between themselves and the Dons and given the fixture list I sense they are confident.

That said I'd rather have the points safely secured in my back pocket than have to chase them down. The O's are doing a fine job but the pressure to keep on winning is sure to build over the coming weeks and that may take its toll.

Final word this week goes to Walsall who have promised Under-18's free entry for all their matches next season! That seems a very generous offer on the club's part and I hope that their brave initiative is rewarded with the loyalty of a whole new generation of fans.

With Aston Villa, Birmingham City, Wolves and West Brom all playing top flight football in the area it's not been easy for the Saddlers to attract big attendances this season so I understand why they have decided to take such a measure.

If they can get thousands of new supporters through the gate and get them spending money on food, drinks and merchandise it could be a win-win situation. It's a bold idea but it could turn out to be an inspired one.


This week's reader's question is from Angelica Holland and it says…

All three of last season's promoted sides are flying high in the npower Championship this season. Can you see the same happening next season with those clubs who'll be promoted from npower League 1?

You have to admire what Leeds United, Norwich City and Millwall have achieved this season Angelica but without putting too much of a dampener on it I would say that their success is a little out of the ordinary for promoted teams. I'd usually expect consolidation in the first season after going up from this division but they've bucked that trend brilliantly.

As it stands Brighton & Hove Albion look favourites to go up with two others but it's impossible to predict how any of them will fare. What's happened with the clubs from last year shows that the standards are high at this level and there is no doubt you can ride an amazing wave from the impetus promotion brings but I'd rather look at it realistically and say that it will be a tall order for any of this year's crop to be challenging for promotion to the Premier League this time next year.

I hope I'm wrong, mind!
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