With four games left to go (yes, just four) I’ve noticed something quite uplifting – a statistic that cheers me immensely.
After what was apparently a crazy game on Tuesday night at Sunderland complete with Fog on The Tyne (sorry, Wear), Ivo Pinto’s last-gasp strike means that still, as of April 12, no side has done the double over us. Only two teams have the chance to spoil that record and both will have to do it at Carrow Road.
Yes, you’ve guessed it: one of our least favourite teams, as in d*rty Leeds, and one of our least favourite managers as in Colin and his Cardiff crew. To maintain that record would be quite an accomplishment in any season let alone this topsy-turvy, transitional and thoroughly inconsistent one.
There were a few sharp intakes of breath when Tuesday’s starting line-up was announced. Was Daniel Farke offering the QPR starting XI the opportunity for redemption or merely resting the right people for Saturday? I’m hardly sure but he sees the individual recovery rate from Saturday to Tuesday and I don’t, so unlike quite a few others, I’m not complaining about the selection.
I suppose I could form a band called Nelson & the Missed Chances. We’d call our debut album The Iberian Enigma, of course. I would recruit one of my favourite guitarists as in Jeff Beck, which brings me neatly on to my Black Cat Moan.
The moan itself: James Maddison flunks a couple of chances and some people on other media are up in arms about it. Surely, they should realise what this guy has brought to the Club and put the complaints firmly back in their pockets.
Of course, Maddison will end up as a one-season-wonder purely by virtue of being sold on, but when you consider what he has done for us he really should be beyond criticism from our own. Barely 22 and featuring in his only full season thus far at this level – having a pop at him is ludicrous.
Interestingly there are a few rumours floating about that our support at the sparsely-populated Stadium of Light was bolstered by a couple of hundred cheeky Magpies who wanted to gloat over their rivals demise at first hand. Oh well, it takes all sorts, I guess. Nothing would get me into Portaloo Road if we weren’t playing there.
I think Ivo Pinto has put the final nail in the Sunderland coffin, and as Gary said yesterday the SAFC supporters are a fine bunch of people. However, there is no sentiment in football and we should consider ourselves first, foremost and solely.
We can only look forward now and let’s be honest that means next season.
Despite what Farke has said in terms of a quieter summer transfer window than this time last year, I simply don’t buy into it. We have no clue who might comprise the in-list but in terms of potential – and I stress potential – outs could be:
McGovern, Angus, Harry Reed, Husband, Franke, Martin, Klose, Tettey, Leitner, Naismith, Wildschut, Maddison, Oliveira, Josh Murphy, maybe even Sean Raggett and all or any of the U-23s who they don’t think will make it. There’s a whole starting XI there without the U-23s.
Plus, our blessed Wes, who will doubtless have a word with Hucks before jetting across the pond to enjoy the well-deserved twilight of his career in whatever they call that league these days.
No Daniel, it will be a very busy window as we will all discover, and thus give the MFW team plenty to write about over what passes for our summer.
As for Marcus Edwards, it might as well have been Marcus Evans. Something was very wrong there from the beginning, but I doubt it cost us anything in real terms. File under N for Nevermind.
So, let’s go and stamp on Colin’s crisp packet on Saturday.