Nope, I still don’t like losing…
I suppose London Broncos 0 Bradford Northern 1 being our second defeat all season in the league is a good thing.
It doesn’t make it any easier though, especially as this maybe should have been different.
Perhaps we should have known it was going to be one of those days, however. Your editor waking up at 5am this morning with a flare-up under my left ankle set the scene.
It felt like Vinny Jones had come out of retirement and mistimed a tackle on me in my sleep.
Entering the ground by using a credit card instead of my season ticket only seemed to add to that, and there was just one of those senses about today.
The first half didn’t really give much away though. They started well, we got back into it, without too much happening.
And that continued into the second half. I genuinely did think on about 58 minutes that it was heading towards a goaless draw.
Which wouldn’t have been too bad, considering.
Of course, we had the perfect opportunity, when Little was bearing down on goal. This was about a couple of minutes after I made the above observation.
That it sailed over the bar seemed to sum up our day. And when they went ahead a minute later…
It’s not like we didn’t try and get a response. We did. It’s just that we could still be playing now and it would find some way of not going in.
Bugiel headed against the post (the ball, not his own head) and I think we just knew by then.
Mind you, it really doesn’t help when you don’t get a nailed-on lifeline by seeing one of your players upended in the box.
And yes, I know we would have missed the spot kick even if the opposition goalie had decided to sit in the west stand while we took it.
Even little moments like a foul throw in injury time while we were about to do one final launch summed it up.
I don’t think too many people would have hung around for the MOTM, somehow.
So, what? Firstly, it proves just how much we miss the Iraqi Scouser. He might have had a bit of joy today.
There was something a bit 2022/23 season about our forward line, namely Josh Davison** running around a lot but with little end product.
** – apparently his wife had a kid at 4am this morning. Which was conveniently timed.
Indeed, with Pearce in for the missing Johnson, it was a little step back in time.
I think it proves that we’ll need to do some proper strengthening in January, or at the very least remove the need to rely on Davison/Pearce/Pell.
Second things second, I suppose it shows how far we’ve come when you consider it’s October 14th and we’re moaning about only our second defeat all season.
I would have snapped your arm off for that stat, which just shows how much we’ve progressed this season.
JJ himself seems annoyed, though I’m not sure if we dominated the game. Maybe would have won it with a bit more accuracy in front of goal, but it was more typical L2 fayre.
At least we can move on quickly from all this, and put it down to one of those days. It’s a strangely reassuring feeling when you can do that.
Plus points: Had a bit of a go when behind.
Minus points: We lost. Clearly a second-string forward line. Not finishing chances. Felt flat.
The referee’s a…: Hmm, yes, well…
Them: Not a bad side, although I’d hesitate to say they deserved the victory. Their goal was their first shot, and I don’t think they had much after that.
They’re clearly in a new manager bounce, and it says something about how things are now when the likes of Mark Hughes are seen as has-beens.
It’s easy to forget that in our Great Escape (TM) season under Walter, that Bradford were the shittiest team in the division at the time.
They should be the sort of club who bounces back, but have still been stuck in L2. A lesson for ourselves, perhaps.
About 900 or so of them came down from west Yorkshire, and happily reminded us that they’re not very good away…
Point to ponder: Seriously, why do we continue to be shit at home?
Those who will be doing the Lancashire/Cumbria tour within the next couple of weeks have a better chance of seeing a victory than against Accrington a week on Tuesday.
It’s not like we even try and win every game 0-0, because of all the games I’ve witnessed this season – we have at least attempted to get something each time.
I’m not sure I necessarily buy the reason that our fans don’t get behind the players at Plough Lane. It seemed OK to me today, but it just didn’t happen on the field.
And trust me, there are a lot of venues up and down the country where they’re better on the field than us but as quiet as we are off it.
In L1 you could understand it a bit. We needed to be on the front foot, but weren’t good enough against better opposition.
Whether there’s still a mental block because of the last couple (OK, more than a couple) of seasons I don’t know.
But at this rate, we’ll be selling season tickets for away games…
Truth is stranger than fiction: 1) Anyone notice we’re kicking towards the south stand in the second half again? Not that it helped us today. 2) Queuing up for a cup of tea still takes longer than a transatlantic flight.
Anything else? Tomorrow (Sunday) is the first round proper of the FA Cup, and we’re in it.
It’s that time of year where you can look at the teams who got through today, and make mental notes about who you’d want.
The trouble with AFCW in this is that between 2002 and 2011, we played many if not most of these teams in league fixtures.
Any obscure team like Worthing or Ramsgutter have been done before, and with the exceptions of Worksop or Bracknell, there’s no obvious backwater club that makes it interesting.
And after last season, I’m not sure if I want a Conference South or lower type side anyway.
I still have horrific memories of Weymouth away from last season, and lest we forget the second round against Chesterfield sucked horse penis.
We might be better off playing a Portsmouth or Oxford (United, not City) team who will be focusing on the league.
True, playing any L1/L2 team in this round is usually a bit meh, unless we get Reading or Derby.
Whoever we play, I’d just like us to have a go and win it. The Carabao Cup this year was great, because it was a little cup run which took us to SW6.
We “need” a cup run just to get the juices flowing again, although of course you mustn’t rely on them.
Of course, you just know we’ll draw Sutton. Or Crawley. Or Franchise…
So, was it worth it? No.
In a nutshell: Back to earth again.