Topic: Sutton United at home.....
FT: 0-1 At: 1319 (49 away)
The ninety third minute. The ninety f***ing third minute.
We shouldn't be surprised.
But we're both.
Football can be cruel. Very cruel.
It all seemed different early on. At times today it really looked like Town might be turning a corner. Admittedly pretty slowly. Well, very slowly. But the signs were fairly good. Kosylo was back after suspension (more of his disciplinary record later) and a decent point against Boreham Wood midweek meant there was some optimism as we took our seats. To be honest, after a skinful at the Bar Christmas bash last night, I was just glad to be in open air.
The play on the pitch was a bonus. A composed midfield. A tight and well-organised defence. Plenty of passing. Decent passing. Retaining possession. Movement off the ball. This was actually good to watch. What was missing was finishing. That's really at the heart of Town's problems. They don't have that killer instinct. For all his industry, Southwell spends most of the 70 or so minutes Fullarton gives him chasing shadows. He is capable of goals, his record at Boston and Guiseley shows that. But it's not happening for him or Town at the moment. They don't score enough.
And that would come to haunt them and us later. Much, much later.
We kind of knew it would although nobody would want to say it out loud.
Hannah recognised the ref when he was warming up. Her assessment of him as an idiot was fairly accurate. He did his best to kill the game. It wasn't a particularly bad-tempered affair but the foul and card count would convince you otherwise. Sutton were one of the fortunately rare sides in the National League that bring with them the histrionics and downright cheating of the top tiers of football. I was surprised at that given that Ian Baird is their manager. The abuse he gave the ref that led to him being shown the red card and dispatched down the tunnel was more the Baird we knew and loved.
I'd told Hannah all about Baird before kick-off. One of my favourite football memories is the 1-0 win over Newcastle in the promotion season. Early December 1989. That was pretty much a perfect day watching football. Not sure today will remain with Hannah in the same way.
Town picked up two bookings before the break. Kosylo sent the brilliantly-named Harry Beautyman literally somersaulting in the air with a late challenge. He'd been elbowed to the head a minute or so earlier. Kosylo's response was inevitable. It's a part of him. A part we're seeing more of as opposed to the skill he's undeniably got. You get me, I'll get you back. Fact is, he was fairly lacklustre today. I suspect another suspension isn't far off. One plus side of him not performing could be the alleged interest from league clubs cooling off.
God knows I've given Odelusi some stick. I'm not alone, but today was another good performance. His booking seemed harsh. When he made way for Edwards late on many would have taken Kosylo off instead. Not sure Edwards actually did anything in his time on the pith. Actually, he did. He failed to get his head on a looping cross with an empty net in front of him.
The pitch looked ready for a break and didn't help the spectacle in the second half. The linesman pulling a calf muscle and the fourth official taking over meant five minutes of added time. They cost Town dearly.
It was inevitable that Sutton would come into the game more. Given this is Town we're talking about the visitor's goal was pretty much inevitable too. They really didn't look up to much. And that's what's so frustrating. Sutton give a lacklustre performance. They get three points. Town play fairly well. They lose. Town should do better. The fact they're not is becoming a worry.
The Fullarton out threads have appeared on the forum. One league win since August 27th and only ten goals scored are stats that would have seen many go already. Heath went after less.
Harrogate Town away for us next on Boxing Day. Drop points there and at Gateshead in a week and things start to look very serious. And the Board may have to make a change at the top....