Sunday 5th May 2019
Any lap of appreciation, renamed of course because it can hardly be called a lap of honour, I normally stay for. Not for my pleasure or enjoyment. Just because I actually think it is the right thing to do. But today, if I shot off at the final whistle I had a chance of getting home about twenty to ten rather than shortly before midnight. And failing to win for the 4th league game on the bounce meant I didn’t take too much persuading.
Football puts us through pretty much every emotion it is possible for a human to experience. From elation to despair, from excitement to boredom, from satisfaction to despondency. And I thank our team for contributing to all that. That is now in writing and on record. They don’t need me stood there looking on with the ‘ump to acknowledge that. Especially when if I had chosen not to offer my support down the years I probably wouldn’t still have a mortgage to pay off.
If we were good enough we would be comfortably in the top four by now. But we have proved in the last couple of weeks we are not. Against half decent and also decidedly mediocre opposition.
I’m not one of the big moaners out there. In fact I am often (probably rightly) accused of seeing things through rose tinted glasses. But eventually the positivity begins to wane and only my team can change that.
Today, somehow, I felt we still had a glimmer of hope when it comes to a top four spot. A win and all 3 teams fighting for those two places had a tough game to complete their season. And we all know in that situation anything can happen.
But, just like our last home game against Palace, we blew it. Before yesterday’s games our opponents could still find themselves not even in the same division as us next season. And there’s a reason for that. Yet they remain unbeaten against us after 180+ minutes. Simply not good enough I’m afraid.
We had our moments today of course. In fact one or two where I’m still scratching my head as to how they didn’t go in. But so did our visitors and that cannot be ignored.
Thursday and we take on Valencia in the 2nd leg of a European semi final. Massive. I’ve been to the Mestalla three times before. We lost all 3. We crave that record to change this week.
Confident I am not, despite our 2 goal half time lead. And I challenge anyone to tell me a good reason why my feelings should be different.
See you in Spain.
Come on you mighty reds.