Monday, 12 January 2009

Another chance

Last week wasn't great. As good as the Wayne Bridge capture was, it was so long heralded as to lose most of its novelty on impact. The 3-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest was as embarrassing a cup exit as we've had in recent years, and a performance so inspid and spineless it would embarrass much of the 2006/07 output. Then came a week of frustration and failure in the transfer market - no Bellamy, no Parker, no Santa Cruz, no Touré. Never mind David Villa or Kaká.

Everything was set up for us to go to Fratton Park and lose. A midfield of Kompany, Gelson and Elano, a frontline of Sturridge, Caicedo and Vassell - as weak and disenchanted an opposition as Pompey could have hoped for now. It wouldn't have been a rout, but after Peter Crouch bundled in Niko Kranjčar's corner we would not have put up much of a fight.

Poor weather and poor facilities combined, however, to get the game called off. The inevitable 1-0 became P-P and City dodged a bullet. Next time we go Fratton Park we'll have Steven Ireland, Shaun Wright-Phillips, three or four new signings and a certain inside forward called Robson de Souza.

Not losing at Portsmouth last Saturday could turn out to be a turning point in 2009. But this new opportunity has to be exploited. We have five working days before the Wigan Athletic match, in which our deficiencies in defence, midfield and attack need to be addressed. I'm not expecting four or three signings, but two would be fantastic. Wigan are good (better than us, for sure) - but they're playing in midweek and I'd back us against most at home. Then it's Middlesbrough, Stoke and Newcastle and if all goes well we could be safe by the time of the Copenhagen games.

1 comment:

Gary said...

Im afraid there are no 'turning points' this season now, its a fight for survival all the way. The middle-of-the-road players Hughes will bring in on silly wages will keep us up by the skin of their teeth (if theyre fit),

Then towards the end of the season the inevitable hamstring injuries associated this season with Hughes over-training will occur, Wayne Bridges persistant ligament injury will rear its ugly head, as will roque santa cruz's. Richard Dunne, who is still the quietest captain on earth will score another own goal in one of the last two games, only for Hughes to come out and back him.

We will lose the last couple of matches finishing 16th, Hughesless will blame the injuries, the crowd, the pitch, the direction of the sun but certainly not himself. He'll promise us that next season we will be much stronger and will then be promptly sacked. Roque Santa Cruz will follow him to Luton, hobbling.

We will then put in place another overly hyped mediocre manager (Paul Jewell probably) to drag us through next season in a similar fashion.

Typical city !