Thursday, December 28, 2006

Hope Kills

At the final whistle, a Leicester-supporting friend (who thus knows all about painful relegations) suggested that ultimately it's the (forlorn) hope that will kill us, not the results.

I had enjoyed the first 73 minutes sat in the delightful Queen Mary British Pub in Jupiter, Florida but then a domestic matter that required attending to forced me to make a premature exit. Finding out on my mobile that we'd failed to hold on was painful enough, and said domestic matter ensured the day did not get any better.

Although I haven't seen it the assistant referee is getting some stick. I could be pedantic and suggest that it led to a nondescript free-kick (which we fatally failed to clear), rather than say a penalty, but perhaps the real lesson is to remember not to celebrate last-minute winners too cockily (Blackburn?) because football will always return to bite you on the backside. That's why we love it though isn't it?

The team selection of Pards was reasonably ambitious and sent clear signals to a number of players, whilst giving as an early taste of what will surely be a straightforward 4-4-2 for the rest of the season. He also provided a clear and visible touchline presence that I certainly reacted positively to, and clearly so did the players.

Ambrose was given a surprise start and showed plenty of commitment (and finished smartly for the first goal). Kishishev was given a deserved start and demonstrated his usual energetic endeavour, alongside Holland who also impressed. And up front Marcus Bent put in a reasonable evening's work before being replaced late on. Even the oft-criticised Djimi Traore showed glimpses (I stress the word 'glimpses') of what persuaded Dowie to ask Andrew Mills to secure him for £2m (that's how it worked wasn't it?).

Post-match Pards was clearly angry but positive, emphasising the point gained and the commitment shown but the truth is that despite an obviously improved performance, we toiled away against a very average Fulham side and still couldn't come out victorious (if the assistant referee gifted Fulham a goal then their defence gifted us one too - 'tis the season after all). Despite the pain of tonight, we have to accept that a goal difference of -20 does not result from bad luck or refereeing decisions. Our defence was shaky again tonight (what on earth was Hreidarsson doing on the first goal?) though the potential January addition of Steven Pressley will be a boost in this department.

Tonight however, those ten wins under Pards are looking like a very tall prospect. Hope indeed.


At 9:15 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Three wheels on my wagon....
Much improved effort from the players- and great to hear the fans support the team
Ambrose- mis-kicked/passed everything inc the goal but keep him in he might win the Lotto
Carson-don't remember him miskicking clearances like this maybe its catching-hope the virus doesn't reach his hands which were consistently safe
Denise- complete tart- runs up the pitch then loses it.
JFH- did he come on as sub?Why? Is he still collecting wages? Why?
D Bent- he stole another goal- with service he could break records.
Crosses from all were poor .
Sankofa- quietly efficient
Poor quality of defending on both sides led to an entertaining game which a draw was a fair if painful result.
Anyone recognise the twerp of Ref assistant? I'm sure that he was involved in an awful offside debacle in a 1-2 defeat at the Valley some years ago(?in our last`promotion run)I think Chris Powell got booked for complaining at half time. The assistant was 10yds behind play and didn't flag.
Do they get checked like refs?This one slipped thru-or under the standards required.

At 12:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know NYA,

Last night we looked liked a proper team ( in comparison to the best selling Xmas Panto that was showing at the valley recently) run by a proper manager who knows when to sub a player and what he's doing.


At 9:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any new year resolutions NYA?
Learning Cantonese?or Esperanto
Can order replacement footballers as we do chinese food?
Tried these in the local
10, 5, 38 reliables always enjoyed
Ones to cross off the menu
18, 19 look and sound good but flavour??


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