A Medium Rare Steak

Date: Sunday 26th September 2010

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16th May 2007

Started off expecting the annual shitloads to nil drubbing. Maybe we could get a consolation. But I'm a little bit pissed - both physically and metaphorically that we didn't get a win.

I feel the need to say "Zat Knight was immense today". He worries the crap outta me normally, but today he was immense, not because he scored, but he 'ran' our defence alongside Ricketts who I thought also had a good 'un.

Of the midfield - it looks like OC has finally determined that Moo is worth leaving back at the expense of someone who's got a chance of scoring (my gran or better) from set pieces. Holden was all over the place putting tackles in, and he does it in that quiet a way, that you could be forgiven for not noticing. OC's "regular" substitution of Moo for Mavis had me worried, we were playing United FFS, and although I thought Moo had one of his quieter games, I'm still not convinced that Mavis is his natural replacement. CYL, I thought had a decent game, good movement n all, without ever reaching the heights of last season - I think he's got a little bit of 'second season' syndrome so far this year.

Now, I guess, I have to get to Petrov. He's lazy, expects others to do his tackling, often loses the ball, sulks when it isn't passed to right onto his left foot, hits the wall about knee height or puts it straight into the keepers hands and the shot when he darts in of the wing into the 28th row of the stand is a delight - but he scored an excellent goal and one I shall remember - Not that I forget many against Utd - I still need to be convinced that he's offering us more than Taylor, when it come to winning matches.

That said, all game we looked like we had a chance of scoring, not just from set-pieces, but in open play. Not everything was lumped at Davo and even at 2-2, we were looking for a winner. One day we may get one, but it's still a bit more worrying back down our end when we've not got the ball.

SKD never looked like winning much, being double teamed and looked fairly ponderous at times when we were breaking, as he's being more prone to do, as he gets no younger. Elmo chased everything for 90 mins, but when all things are considered proved to be the turning point of the match. You're through on goal, as he had been in the first half - only the keeper to beat - and you knock it a) straight into his hands - difficult chance, or b) into the top tier of the North stand. Both pretty good chances by Prem standard, both wasted. I think Elmo's generally having a good season for us, but today he was probably the difference between 1 point and 3. I don't accept that "had he not been there, the chance wouldn't have happened" - he's paid to be there.

I have a couple of gripes - I'm not sure about our midfield - vacant some of the time when defending, but allegedly capable of much. Our defenders let players run too far - not just for the goal - see Nani - but generally. Robinson isn't accomplished enough to challenge without getting booked and Steiner's similar, Knight and Rickett's didn't let us down.

If you'd have offered me a point before the game, recent results against United, would have compelled me to take it. As it happens, I'm still happy with a point, but we need a team, that's not only difficult to beat, but can take three points. Drawing is not much use in the Prem. 97/98, we lost fewer games than the season before last, but still went down.

Funniest thing for me, after finally getting out of the car park and home, was to head to a pub full of fairly pissed United fans who pretty much all said, "Shit game that, wasn't it?" I can only conclude they meant "feck, we didn't win that one".

I lost count of the number of times one of the cnuts said "Bet you're delighted with that result?" How the fcuk would they know? They've never been to a match for 20 years (most of them).

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