Well, that's that then. An early goal in each half from them, and a fair bit of dithering around by us from most of the rest of the game. If, as Dr Phil says, that the best predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour, then the last several weeks pretty much showed how we were going to finish the season off. Winning the title from fifth would have been easier if we had stormed our way in, riding the crest of a wave. As it was, we limped in, out of form, and out of luck - the kind of luck that follows you like a hobo who wants a cigarette when you're playing well.
So what now? Well, on field there's several issues that will need to be dealt with. The keeping situation of course. The parts of the defence that allow those chances. The midfield that gives the ball away cheaply. The players paid to put away chances and yet don't. If this sounds like a plea for a mass cleanout, it's not. Because pretty much the same team also went 10 games undefeated, played some very good football and even scored some cracking goals. Mentally though something switched off at a certain point in the 2nd half of the year. We kept falling behind, kept botching rudimentary opportunities, and seemed at times to be utterly dazed and confused, and that included some of the decisions of the coaching staff.
Now regular readers will have deduced by now that I'm no scholar when it comes to the game. I have players and styles of play that I like more than others, but these aren't necessarily because they are the best, the most attractive or most effective. So I'm not going to really proffer my expertise here, because it would be pointless. I'm just a raconteur, a petty wordsmith with a little hobby and a little bit too much carefully engineered spare time. And besides, there are plenty of soccer professors out there who are far more capable than me of coming up with theories as to where it all went wrong, and more importantly, what needs to be done to get it all right. And even as I type these words to you, they are frothing at the mouth, dispensing their gifts of wisdom like Father Christmas on a commission based wage.
For the time being, I'm going to focus my interests on some of the big off field stuff. Like the Lakeside redevelopment, where the fuck are we going to play next year, constitutional reform, and doing an inventory of all the stuff the club has. Maybe get back to doing some kore historical stuff too. A few loose ends to tie up as well on here like hand out some awards no one cares about, and the women's team playing finals football for the first time in who knows how long. Catching up with people I haven't seen too much of for the past six months, and maybe going to see the odd band or film, or even read a book. And there's my Offset project too and figuring out what I'm going to do next year. But I digress.
So while one season finishes, and in a sputtering fashion at that, there is I believe, something to build on all round for the club. The racist, the solipsist, the professorial and those who can't see beyond yesterday might not be able to see it, but I reckon it's there.