Tales of an away day – Brighton and Hove Albion
I don’t know why I bother yeno. I’ve not seen us win away since boxing day last year but I never learn and never will learn. “oh we might win this one”. Nah.
8 o’clock on Saturday morning and 11 of us crammed onto a minibus and made the 282 mile trip down to Worthing, 15 miles outside of Brighton for an overnight stay. 6 hours and 3 piss stops later we got to the hotel, got changed, went for a pint and then went into Brighton. We ended up having to get a taxi from Hove to Brighton cos of a 40 minute train delay but Brighton was absolutely rammed but it was sound. Full of every different type of person you could think of. Cool people, people with tattoos all over them, people with piercings, tourists etc and their tag of the gay capital of the UK lived up to expectation as well. I even met someone in a pub who grew up in the same village as me which made my head fall off. A good night anyway.
Sunday morning, had a brekky, jumped on the minibus and went the ground. It was mad how little confidence any of us had in Everton, none of us were expecting a win. Against Brighton. Unbelievable.
The team was better than expected but still not right. Playing Sigurðsson at number 10, correct. Playing Calvert-Lewin at right mid, incorrect. Playing Gueye and Schneiderlin together, incorrect. We’re playing Brighton and he’s playing our two main defensive midfielders la, I can’t be arsed. I also bet it was painful for him to drop Ashley Williams.
We started quite well but never looked like scoring, Gueye had a few shots but nothing troubled their keeper. A shit first half was matched by a shit second half. It took Koeman 70 minutes to make the first substitution when it quite clearly needed changing after 45 minutes and the man he brought on was Niasse. I don’t care what anyone says but I’m afraid the lad isn’t a footballer, he’s technically as good as Eric the Eel trying to swim. If you don’t know who that is, see ( https://youtu.be/GQbKCHsRIyk ).
As the game went on you could just sense a Brighton goal, and, right on cue that goal arrived. Some absolute Chernobyl style defending let Knockaert slot under Pickford on 82 minutes. We were handed a huge lifeline when their stupid defender elbowed Calvert-Lewin in the head and gave us a pen. Why he did that I have absolutely no idea. Rooney sent the keeper the wrong way and we could easily have won it at the end but for their keeper turning into Gordon Banks and coming up with an unbelievable save from Mirallas but we didn’t deserve to win anyway. The match finished and we set off for the 6 hour drive back home.
A few things I’ve noticed over the past few weeks is that our midfield are genuinely scared of being in possession of the ball. Gueye and Schneiderlin had so many opportunities to go forward yesterday but still decided to turn to the defence and play the easy, backwards, shithouse pass. This happened too many times. Another example is when Keane of Jagielka would be in possession and instead of the midfield coming in to offer options, they’d run away and force our defence to play a long, hopeful ball over the top. Our fans moan about the man on the ball playing backwards all the time but he can’t help it if no one’s coming in to offer an option can he? We’re so static and negative and it’s a massive problem that’s been going on since the start of the season and it’s getting worse. None of the football we play is positive, it’s negative and dead dead dead boring and the finger had to be pointed at the manager and the coaching staff. Koeman sets them up in these god awful formations and tells them to play in a more negative way than a Morrissey song on repeat. He slouched and sulked in his chair when they went 1-0 up yesterday. No movement or positivity. Nothing. The most stubborn and ignorant man alive. It’s his way or no way and it has to change. We need a young and vibrant manager who’ll make use of the best youth team in England instead of letting them rot on the bench, in my opinion anyway. Koeman feels obliged to play the players he signed and it doesn’t work.
The whole club are in a bad place at the moment but it won’t stop me from going the match. That team doesn’t deserve the support it receives. 600 mile round trip and there were 3000 blues there on a Sunday afternoon, leaving early hours or staying over. We’ve got the most loyal fan base yet the worst football team in the league at the moment. It’s hard to see where any positivity’s going to come from.
Lyon and Arsenal this week anyway, should be a good laugh that shouldn’t it?