Things We Think We Think #300

TWTWT

1. After scoring nine without reply in two games, we felt like we could touch survival in the Championship for another year, something which rarely felt anything close to inevitable since the turn of the year. As we approach the last triad of matches and shut the door on a pretty wretched campaign, we can at least regard the culmination of the season as successful and entertaining.

2. Well, that was the case until Sheffield Wednesday rolled into town at the weekend. They and their six billion supporters are nothing special at all, yet City’s infuriating apathy against them made for a brutally unwatchable afternoon at the Circle. Defeat when safety was ready to be assured is frustrating; a total lack of commitment after such an enjoyable couple of weeks of vibrant, flowing football is something approaching unforgivable.

3. Still, we ought not to dwell on defeat to the World’s Biggest Club for too long. Firstly, it might give their supporters undue belief that we give a toss; beyond that, we have a much more fun occasion from the last seven days to look back upon – namely, the jolly at Burton Albion.

4. A ground tick, of course. And we got to stand on a terrace, a rare treat indeed (and with the Government this week short-sightedly claiming nobody should want to do this at a football match any more, timely and apt – more on this shortly); and then we saw City tear apart the minnows of the Championship with an incisive, positive performance that contained some fine goals and seemed to allow for a re-connection between fans and players that hasn’t always been prevalent in these turbulent times for our club.

5. It was quite the evening for Kamil Grosicki. He scored two fine individual goals, hit the post and did a quite ludicrous dive in the area towards the end that got him a yellow card. Widely regarded as our best all-round footballer, he is nevertheless capable of acts of amateurishness that possibly contribute to the reason for his lack of suitors earlier in the season. But if we are to rise from the lousy troughs of this season under Nigel Adkins, you can imagine he’d quite like a focused, professional Grosicki to be at the forefront of it.

6. Meanwhile, Adkins has declared that he wants to keep Allan McGregor at the club, while there is strong rumour in circulation concerning an about-turn on David Meyler’s future, and he will be offered a deal. Of course, what the head coach wants and what the hierarchy are prepared to offer are likely to be a million miles (or a few thousand quid, or a year or two, apart) so we’ll take the prospect of the last two survivors of our FA Cup final squad remaining at the club next season with a few shovelfuls of salt.

7. It’s now mid-April, and City are still dicking around with votes no-one wants on an issue everyone’s already in agreement on. To re-iterate: City lost the original vote heavily, and are now resorting to offering “unique prizes” in the second poll in order to get turnout into double figures. It doesn’t appear to be working, though that means that City will invalidate the first vote on the spurious grounds of turnout while refusing to disclose the result; then declare concessions “unwanted” on the second vote while refusing to disclose both turnout and voting figures. This, we imagine, will all seem terribly clever and funny to Ehab. Which explains why his family’s reputation is in the gutter.

8. The club also promised it would start calling itself Hull City by now. Another broken promise, another lie from a club that seems institutionally incapable of being straight with supporters.

9. Ehab isn’t the only apparently uncomplicated individual who’s had a rotten week. Step forward Sports Minister Tracey Crouch, Hull University alumnus and MP for Chatham and Aylesford, who inexplicably contends that the desire for safe standing is the preserve of a “vocal minority”. She doesn’t even have the excuse of former Sports Ministers, who’ve been elevated to the Cabinet with no apparent knowledge of sport – she’s actually an FA coach. So her ignorance is positively inexplicable. But it may actually be useful in the long run. The backlash has been loud and sustained, and has galvanised afresh the overwhelming majority who favour safe standing as an option. Quite why this, or any other Government, feel they have the right to bar football fans from watching their chosen event in a way that virtually other sector of society is permitted to is beyond explanation – but, Minister, safe standing is an idea whose time has come. Probably better to get on board now.

10. It has been announced that Greg Abbott, a stalwart at City during rotten times in the 1990s, has had to step down from his behind the scenes role at Bradford City in order to start treatment for prostate cancer. Naturally, we wish a man who gave us great service a very speedy recovery.

7 replies
  1. WSM
    WSM says:

    Re. your 7 – “This, we imagine, will all seem terribly clever and funny to Ehab. Which explains why his family’s reputation is in the gutter.” I’d love to see this quote in the national press – it’s so perfect. For the sake of always being seen to be right they are indeed trashing their own reputation. Surely they must now badly want out and actually go through with it this summer. I so hope so.

  2. John from Brid
    John from Brid says:

    Sheffield Wednesday the team whose players fall down on and off the ball for no apparent reason, and a referee who in most of these falls stopped the game, when the squirrel appeared he stopped the game again which me having not noticed shouted WHAT THE FUCK IS HE DOING NOW ( apologies to those around me at the time ).if only we had the Wolves Birmingham ref, many falls rightfully ignored. The game itself I found not to bad, this must be the effect of watching such dross as the Millwall and Leeds games which were truly awful. Hope springs eternal, COMEONUUUULLLL!!

  3. Michael Coates
    Michael Coates says:

    Good piece again, with alot of truths.
    Personally I didn’t vote last time & I can’t be arsed this time around.
    Did our players think all they had to do was turn up on Saturday & Sheffield Wednesday would roll over?
    I would let McGregor go, he’s not athletic or tall enough now for a goalie. Although this season he has pulled of some saves & gifted 3 points to Leeds united.
    Also while I think Myler as done well for us I would let him go also.

  4. Richard pearson
    Richard pearson says:

    Miyler, McGregor and Bowen and maybe Dawson too, seem to be the few City players who have appeared seriously bothered when City have underachieved. They are the players who have put in a shift and, unlike the mercenaries, playing for City means something more than a paypacket.
    I don’t know who our crazy owner will sell, buy or rent next season but of some of the shabby loanees we’ve seen this season we are better rid (always excepting Harry the Wonder Kid).
    Can we hope fortune may smile in the summer and the Allams will be just a bad dream? No!
    Thanks to you all at A.N. Your reports and thoughts have been the best thing of a rotten season.

  5. Blackadder
    Blackadder says:

    McGregor has had a decent season and I’d rather see him retained than David Marshall who seems to let in a couple of soft goals every time he plays. Meyler is worth keeping for his penalty taking alone and although he has a bad habit of misplacing a pass or two he adds some steel to the midfield that will be needed, especially if Larsson moves on, he has also scored some important goals over the years. I don’t know where the FA finds its referees but we almost always seem to get a useless fucker who performs as if he’s never done the job before. Time and time again Sheffield’s actors flopped to the turf and the idiot in black stopped the game when the rules clearly state that a referee should only stop play when a player is seriously injured or has a head injury. The disallowed goal was a farce and put the topper on a crap game with two crap teams and even crapper match officials!

  6. Cumbrian Tiger
    Cumbrian Tiger says:

    Hey 300 TWTWT postings – CONGRATULATIONS on your valiant efforts to celebrate the successes we have enjoyed and your explanations of the sad and sorry state to which the Allams have taken OUR football club

    I first watched Hull City in 1959 at the age of 8 and have seen the great days of Waggy, Chillo and Ken Houghton, the sad and sorry days in Division 4, the lock out at Boothferry Park and the renaissance under Adam Pearson. The promotions, the Cup Final and now this sad excuse of a season.

    So committed to HULL CITY AFC am I that a former pupil of mine chose to work for the club (although his dad might have had some influence in that too!) and is still there!

    Next season we need:
    1. A team of quality players in place in July so that Nigel Adkins ( or whoever) can have a proper pre season build up;
    2; A year free of serious injuries – Moses Adebejo etc fit and playing well;
    3. A commitment from all players – with no-one looking for a move a la Dawson to Forest, Grosiki to anywhere, etc;
    4. A few loan players with the dedication and commitment to themselves and Hull City in the manner of H Wilson;
    5. A manager who has the freedom to select, buy and develop players without interference from above;
    6. The reunification of supporters and club through the end of stupid memberships schemes and the restoration of proper concessions;
    7: Some slightly better refereeing decisions;
    8. AND – the promised land of new owners.

    I suspect that as I approach the end of my 6th decade my playing days may be over – so it will be down to others but if there is a need for a new manager I could make myself available.

    Thanks for cheering Monday mornings during this miserable season – here’s to your next 300 TWTWTs and my next 60 years supporting Hull City AFC.

    Now – a pint of Mansfield Bitter or better still Hull Brewery Anchor Ale.

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