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His and Hers

Does anyone remember the Thurrock game in our first (and only) BSS season? No, not the one where A Divot became a Dons legend, but the home game. If you don’t, here’s a little reminder.

OK, it wasn’t quite on that scale, but had we left KM tonight with a point or less, you could have been forgiven for kicking your nearest domesticated animal. The fact that Suburb 2 Village 0 was down to two injury time goals doesn’t really tell the story – we could, and should, have been at least a couple of goals up before half time, yet we did look like we’d lost our way in the second half.

But, not for the first time, we had options off the bench. No, Jolley and co didn’t quite have the same impact as Saturday, but Rashid Yussuff did.  For the first time I can remember, we have a few strings in an increasingly big bow. Admittedly, we did have a bit of help when their #6 got red-carded for angrily kicking the ball away with his back to the ref from their goal kick. Seriously, how big a dick do you have to be to do that? Christ, that’s the sort of thing you would have the piss taken out of if you did that in a school playground…

That said, it was what we deserved. Only one team was trying to win the game, Histon were more than content to park the bus, hoof clear at any given opportunity and e–v–e–r—s—o—s—-l—-o—-w—-l—-y take goal kicks and throw ins. They made Southport look like Chelski. When we got our penalty (which was far more of one than at Haig Avenue) I couldn’t see us missing it. No, I mean it.

As for the penalty itself, if there wasn’t a net there, DK’s strike would still be travelling past Guildford as I type. Maybe it was a message to the attention-seeking convicted fraudster? Or a message to Jon Main on how to take a spot kick.

Speaking of JM, he got pulled off again. Making no comments.

I will certainly make a comment or two about Andre Blackman though. He clapped us at the beginning, and at the end. I know the guy has a “reputation”, but I got the feeling right at the end that he was looking around and thinking “fucking hell, people appreciate of what I’m doing”. And he really could end up being the best player in the AFCW era if he finds a way of keeping his head straight. Maybe it will click for him and he realises what he’s got and what he could have….

A few other things : John Beck was sent off at half time and apparently wasn’t allowed back into the stadium. Reportedly, it was for verbally abusing the ref, although what he’d done is unclear. Surely though being a John Beck side there’s no need for any kind of specific instructions on how to play?

I took a trip into the new carvery-and-back-bar area. Not the main eating area, of course, it’s not for the likes of us. The “new” back bar is, well, intimate. It’s not so bad if there’s only a few people in there, but trying to get served for a busy period looks a nightmare. You can’t  blame people making a detour to a local pub before hand.

Speaking of the carvery, one perk of it is to have TB announce the team on the PA in there beforehand. I’m sure it’s very well appreciated by the diners etc, but is that the sort of thing a manager should be doing before a game? Are users of the carvery going to be so demanding that they absolutely have to hear words from a guy who would rather be planning last-minute strategy? In other words, doing his job. Not to mention announcing our team to the away directors so publicly.

Decent crowd of over 3k. I thought the segregation was going to be in effect this season? OK, maybe it was felt that 20 Histon fans weren’t going to cause trouble, but after making such a big deal about it last season, it seems odd that we’re back to the usual arrangement. This whole segregation plan feels like trying to search for the end of a rainbow, or Kjetil Waehler : you know it’s there but you’re not sure it exists.

Oh, and how nice is it to see our electronic sub board working again? Its demise last season seemed rather symbolic of the latter stages of the last campaign.

Final thought for tonight : come April, we could be hovering between the playoff spot and out of it. Results like this and Southport will make that one position difference. Remember that in the opening three games last season we had the perfect mid-table set of results (W1 L1 D1), and we’ve already surpassed it. Yes, you can argue that we need to be putting teams like Histon to the sword much earlier in the game, and our front line needs that consistency again. But as that Thurrock game a mere couple of years ago proved, you can win titles in August…