FIRST impressions can go one of two ways. They can be spot-on or horribly misleading.

Sometimes, gut instincts are wildly inaccurate.

With the benefit of hindsight, you look back and wonder how or why you leapt to such an early, wide-of-the-mark conclusion.

On other occasions, those snap judgements are perfectly valid.

Your instincts serve you well and you preserve an opinion, even when you know more about someone or something.

It would be nonsensical and ridiculous to judge a player after just two matches of the season.

However, my very, very early impression of summer signing Thomas Holy is that he might be a goalkeeper that makes me nervous!

I can’t stress enough that this is written with tongue slightly in cheek.

I and we haven’t seen enough to form a proper, considered opinion just yet.

But there were a couple of times when a sharp intake of breath was needed as he came to deal with high balls during Saturday’s draw against Sunderland.

Perhaps it was a case of being nervous (him, not me) but I certainly felt his handling could have been better.

He tends to punch the ball, rather than catch it, and that always makes me slightly uneasy.

Likewise, his kicking was hardly convincing, although the strong, swirling wind may have been a factor there.

That said, he didn’t really have a save to make and could do nothing about the goal, having been left so badly exposed following Luke Chambers’ gaffe.

It’ll be interesting to see how he does next time out, although I suspect that won’t be in tomorrow’s Carabao Cup tie at Luton Town.

Boss Paul Lambert will surely make numerous changes and one of them, I’m guessing, will see Wolves loanee Will Norris replace Holy.

If he does well, it could be an interesting tussle for the gloves this season, perhaps with little between the two.

I suspect all of Saturday’s substitutes will be in from the start tomorrow, meaning minutes for the likes of James Wilson, Jordan Roberts, Andre Dozzell, Idris El Mizouni and Emyr Huws.

It could also mean a start for Alan Judge.

Talking of whom, I was genuinely shocked by the negativity surrounding the Irishman’s performance against the Black Cats.

I gather there were some less-than-complimentary callers on the post-match radio phone-in and I read online comments along the lines of ‘we should have cashed in and sold him to QPR’.


I couldn’t disagree more.

Yes, Judge was poor by his very high standards, after coming on as a first-half substitute for the injured Luke Garbutt.

His set-pieces were wayward and little came off, on this occasion.

But he’s still regaining match fitness, after missing so much of pre-season, and he can surely be the creative heartbeat of this side.

He deserves more respect and to be cut some slack.

If Town are going to push for promotion, they need their best players.

Judge is most definitely within that bracket among the current Portman Road roster.