Ronald's Regrets at the Reebok
Missing a sitter in the first few minutes and letting one in at the end of injury time: a perfect summary of our season. It`s not that we are not good enough for the PL but if we cannot perform the two key functions of football adequately we are going to struggle. And we are.
That opening statement was easy to write because it almost runs on rails. To be honest, I don`t really want to write this report because it makes me think about the game. I still cannot believe we lost ... and in such a stupid fashion. It still hurts, to the extent that I had to get out on the bike this morning and pedal up all the hills I could find to forget the pain, or at least transfer it to my legs and lungs.
It didn`t work, especially when I passed the Chelsea training ground. It made me recall the euphoria I felt on a night a mere month ago when we held on heroically to gain an unforgettable victory. Now that memory is tarnished because it appears as an occasional fluke, when set against our abysmal performances against lesser teams, or even against our inability to close out matches we should have won.
Knowing the result did not make it any less of a surprise when on Football First I watched Zubar`s back pass which gifted Bolton an unlikely three points. The fact that he had committed two similar errors earlier in the match took his action into the realms of the absurd. He`s rightly getting a good bollocking for it on blog-sites - though I bet those comments are not as bad as the one MM gave him in the tunnel - and he`s going to have to live with his mistake for a long time, especially if we are relegated. Yet, this is the guy, who lifted the team on his return from injury, and who played a blinder against Chelsea.
Before the match (virtually) everybody was saying that this was one we had to win, given the quality of the opposition in the next two matches. Results elsewhere compound our problems, though I think that WHU have been threatening to come good for some time. It`s getting very close to lovesW`s Doomsday scenario, in which we have to go for broke, that is all-out attack, if we wish to avoid the drop. Perhaps we`ll do it on Saturday, though I doubt it. We have to try something else, every other plan having failed to lift us out of the bottom three.
As I passed Chelsea`s training ground, another thought struck me: would I see Torres? I didn`t but it occurred to me that other teams had made good use of the transfer window to improve their squad ... like WHU, for instance! We, on the other hand, spent less than £1m and did nothing to fill our problem positions in defence. At least with Hennessey in such great form - and getting so much practice - we will not be overwhelmed, merely losing matches by the odd goal. Moreover, Hammill looks a good buy and will score goals as well as create openings for others. Similarly, O`Hara will strengthen our midfield when he is fit, that is, in his brief residency at Molineux before he leaves us for a PL side at the end of the season. Small, if temporary, straws of comfort.
It was a disappointing evening all round. I couldn`t watch the match on any freeview sites, as they were being blocked. Well, one site showed five seconds of action before freezing for a minute or two. Typically, one brief segment showed Jarvis running onto a through ball and drawing back his foot to shoot. When service was resumed the score unaccountably remained at 0-0! As I couldn`t access the Beacon broadcast either, I had to make do with the official blog. Gosh, those bloggers really suffer for their support ... and I thought I was a bag of nerves. It`s going to get worse too, that is, until it becomes clear that we are going down, at which point I will achieve Nirvana and the team will start winning matches.