Another week gone and another defeat to deal with, however, having listened to the game, watched the highlights and spoken to my folks, who were both at the game, a certain chant sprung to mind.
I remember one of my very first football games as a kid, it was Wednesday against Leeds and I went to Hillsborough with my dad and my granddad, a Leeds fan.
If I remember correctly I was about six years old and the referee was having an absolute shocker. There’s a common song that refs have to put up with when they’re not having the best of games, it entails lyrics concerning their, erm, ‘handiwork’ and the last word rhymes with banker.
The innocent little chab that I was, I wanted to join in. “The referee’s a whacker!” I shouted. My dad looked down and smiled, “Yes Joe, he is a whacker this one.”
As you’d expect, it became a bit of a family joke, and one of the first messages I got during the Huddersfield game this weekend was from my old man who purely said, “This referee’s a right whacker.”
And look, I’m not going to blame the referee for our loss. Defensively we were very poor, again, but when you have two penalties given against you in one game then you’re always going to struggle.
Yes, the first one was clumsy and it as definitely a pen. Kirkland did well to stop it, but we didn’t get that bit of luck we needed and we found ourselves 1-0 down. The second goal was just downright poor from the defence, it was a decent ball in and a good header, but Novak should never have been able to get to it.
Anyway, credit where credit is due.
The boys rallied, Reda pulled a goal back, and there was a bit of hope. When they went down to 10, deservedly, we were back in with a shout. However, Mr. Salisbury was always likely to try and even things up, feeling guilty of course, and obviously just before half time we were also a man down.
It’s fine, I thought, as I listened on Wednesday Player. He’s evened the sides up, he’ll give us a penalty at some point, it’s only fair, surely? But no. Mr. New Sarum decides to override his own decision and give them another one instead, cue mission impossible.
Once again the boys responded well. They kept on pushing, they had more than enough opportunities to get back into the game and Reda even managed to bugger up a chance that would have been easier to score, but it wasn’t to be. Salisbury and his sidekick with a flag ruined things, let the game get out of hand, and I think the Huddersfield fans will agree with me that they were a bit of a nightmare.
Dave Jones, speaking after the game, didn’t mince his words, a quality of his that I like. We were shite defensively, he knows that, and he doesn’t try and hide it. He said, “It wasn’t good enough, and we’ve got to take a long hard look at ourselves because we can’t defend at the moment. We’re making basic errors, and we’ve got to be stronger and better than that.”
The former Everton, Coventry and Preston defender said that he’d even pull out his old boots and get on the field if they didn’t buck up their ideas. “The defence aren’t doing enough. I’m not berating them, but they’re conceding too many goals. I won’t let them off the hook. You either get rid or you work at it. I might even put my boots on again, I can’t do any worse than some of the defending we’re coming up with at the moment.”
I’m writing this piece on the eve of our game against Bolton Wanderers, another tough one, this time against a team who were among England’s big guns this time last season.
By the time this blog goes to air we’ll either be bemoaning another defeat, claiming to be satisfied with a draw or celebrating with renewed optimism as a win spurs us back on to believe that we’re playoff contenders.
Either way, come on Wednesdayites. Get behind the boys, the Championship is a bloody tough league, we’ve had a reasonable start for a recently promoted team and we’ve got some damn good talent at our disposal. Oh, and do me a favour, if you’re one of the cretins calling for DJ’s head, give it a rest, you’re a whacker.