Sunday, 1 May 2011

Chelsea needed assistants - and our season's crossed the line marked 'disappointing'

You know when you take a tumble or get into a scrape, it's often not the first pain you feel that turns out to give you the most trouble?

Maybe you initially wince at a cut on your knee, or feel the sharp sting of taking some skin off your hands. That fucking hurts. You fucking curse. That's definitely the fucking problem. And that's what you focus on.

Then a day or even a week later, that pain's gone, and what's actually bothering you is the dull, nagging ache in your ribs. That's what you really need to get checked out. That's the real damage.

Yesterday we all initially raged and cursed against the injustice of two goals that should never have stood. They were both close calls, but only one was an understandable mistake from the linesman - the offside decision. The ball had ping-ponged around a bit, and Kalou was only fractionally off. It happens.

The first, however... surely you can only give it if you're sure? And, seeing as the ball didn't cross the line, well, he can't have been sure, can he? It's an inherent contradiction.

Fair play to both managers, though. Ancelotti immediately said Chelsea were lucky and Redknapp refused to lambast the officials. Not sure Wenger or Ferguson would have been so magnanimous if they'd have been given either end of the lollipop.

That was the grazed knee, though. The morning after, we have worse wounds. Gomes, for a start. These howlers are becoming too regular. One a season? Okay, maybe, but, what, three or four in the last month or so, plus a couple of near misses.

As Danny Baker (@prodnose) said on Twitter yesterday: "To be fair, I think most officials these days start signaling for a goal as soon as the ball heads towards Gomes."

He's become a punchline. And f0r Spurs fans, that joke isn't funny anymore.

Also, for the rest of the game we didn't really threaten - but, Chelsea weren't exactly swarming all over us, either.

Sandro was, of course, excellent, and showed he's got a Thud-style thunderbolt in the locker, whilst, alongside him, Luka continues to make us tick. They look like being our first choice pairing from now on.

(Plenty of talk about Scott Parker in the papers this morning, but centre midfield is surely one department where we're overly blessed).

Pav was immensely frustrating and gave the ball away too easily too often. He's not far away from being a brilliantly effective striker who could take the Premier League by storm. But far enough. And perhaps we've given him long enough.

So, 4th is off the menu. Just the two vegetarian options remain, 5th or 6th. With a trip to Anfield to come and morale in the toilet, 6th looks most likely (although I absolutely don't subscribe to the school of thought that says it's most desirable).

We will end the season (as we've ended most seasons in the last 20 years) with no trophy and no European football. This time, though, it be a real punch in the guts - and the pain will be felt deeper and last longer than yesterday's grazed knee.


  1. Paverage was his usual self. Bale & Lennon ineffective. Raf doing what he wanted rather than what we needed. Charlie at LB, seriously? Kaboom not as good as we're used to, fitness issues? It's all been said re Gomes but we should remember that he actually did recover & make the save. Sandro outstanding but instead of congratulating him Redknapp berates him. Sadly the 2 ridiculous goal decisions will detract from the real issues in this team. But you know what? 2.5 years ago we only had 2 points from 8 games. I'm sure we'll be hearing more about that than about this season if we finish 6th.

  2. It's tough weighing it up with Gomes. He's made several saves this season that other keepers would've got nowhere near - goals would've been conceded by them and no-one would've thought any more about it. And likewise when Gomes saves such shots, you don't necessarily dwell on it too much. Not saying these saves redeem the errors but as stated, it's tough to weigh it all up. Would a lesser, more consistent keeper win/lose/save us more points over the seasons course?