After losing two Montgomery Waters Meadow games in a week, Town go in search of joy on the road with a trip to Fleetwood Town tonight, writes Lewis Cox.
Shrewsbury have dropped to 20th in League One after just one win from their opening seven league games. Tonight’s hosts, managed by Joey Barton, sit 12th after three wins from eight.
A congested and demanding fixture schedule then takes Town to high-flying Peterborough United, who are second, on Saturday.
Town have been left licking their wounds after enjoying the lion’s share of possession and efforts on goal in their last two games, but ending pointless.
“If we’ve come off the pitch having only three or four shots on goal it’s a completely different environment,” said Ricketts, whose side posted 12 shots against Bristol Rovers and 20 against Rochdale, with just Aaron Pierre’s header to show for their efforts.
“Then you are coming off the pitch thinking ‘where do we go from here?’
“We’re coming off the pitch in the last couple of games having teams coming in and saying we’re the best team they’ve played this year.
“You can’t really do any more than that. Points will come. If we’d played all the games again I’m sure we’d nearly double our points with the exact same performance level, we just haven’t had the rub of the green a number of times, or decisions with officials.
“It has just been a run like that. But you can’t lose what very, very good traits (there have been) from the performance side.”
Ricketts bemoaned the misfortune he feels his team have suffered this season. The Town boss has said on several occasions his team have been harshly denied penalties.
But the Welshman confessed it is up to his side to make their own luck in a bid to put a frustrating start to bed.
“It would’ve been nice if we had VAR. We’d have scored last Tuesday night and gone ahead, they (Rochdale) wouldn’t have scored their second at the weekend because that was offside,” the boss added.
“We’ve had other offsides go against us, somehow we didn’t have a penalty against Wimbledon. We certainly aren’t getting the rub of the green our players are deserving.
“We have to keep doing what we’re doing and convert chances, and also make our own luck. We can’t just wait for things to happen, to convert excellent performances into points.”
Town were yesterday awaiting the outcome of scan results on Macedonian goalkeeper Deyan Iliev, who is on loan from Arsenal.
Iliev was only fit enough for the bench as an emergency in Saturday’s defeat to Rochdale, with Harry Burgoyne deputising.
Ricketts is hopeful that defender Ethan Ebanks-Landell will overcome a bout of illness and be contention this evening.
But new recruit Matt Millar, with what is understood to be a hamstring problem, and Shaun Whalley (calf) are still not ready to return.
“We have to maintain what we are doing,” Ricketts said. “Stats are not everything but point you in a direction of whether things are right or wrong.
“Possession (on Saturday) we were the highest in League One, attempts at goal we were the highest in League One. Shots on target we were ninth, I’d like that to be higher.
“And corners, we were the highest, so it tells you we’re performing very, very well. It’s just that little bit luck, or bad decisions by officials, there’s not much we can do about. The games come down to moments like that.”