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Moments of Pleasure

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Everything posted by Moments of Pleasure

  1. I feel and share your frustration, and quiet despair, and I, too, am tempted by, and drawn to, simplistic explanations and wishful thinking. There is some solace to be found there. Some. But we kid ourselves when we think we know what those running the show should or could or ought to be doing, instead of what they are or are not doing. It is easy to ignore what is currently going on compared to what went on before, that we are now doing "our usual thing." I know it will not help to point out here that "our usual thing" at this level of English football is not to slowly progress up the division; "our usual thing" amongst yer Forests, yer Derbys, yer Wednesdays and co is to very soon find the going a bit much, then sink like a stone back to L1. This truth does not help when the play-offs are there for the taking, we can almost reach out and touch them. All we need to do is ..... it is frustrating to be so close, and yet, the way we have been playing recently, so close and yet so far. It is agonising, almost. Being on here, all day, throughout January can only make us feel worse, as we wait, and wait, while Ashton in his ivory tower at that BristolSports twiddles his thumbs and trims his bloody beard and gazes at his Football Business Awards Beardy Suit **** of the Year on the cabinet behind his glass-top desk and idles the day away, when he could have Eddie and three more up at Failand already, the useless t***er.....
  2. Oh right, ok. Didn’t know all this. The Mk don players, though, they were treated differently because they behaved differently, from Ayling, at Cheltenham, so I'd say it matters in that regard. When did this reputation you speak of date from, after Cotts left? After promotion? Before we signed him?
  3. We appear to be bogged down, at the moment. There is a heaviness about us, we are leaden-footed, sluggish, lacking spontaneity. Tired. A number of things have derailed us, from losing out on Eddie so late, then seemingly finding a solution to this in Afobe and then losing him to a serious injury. Then more injuries to key players. And when players like Kalas and Nagy return, they are half what they were at their best. Elsewhere, talented individuals come in and out of the team, but their positives are undermined by considerable negatives. Home form and performances nosedive as opponents find it easier and easier to frustrate and deny us. On top of this, one of the players suffers a devasting personal trauma. This is all enough to test most coaches/managers, let alone one always under question or suspicion with a significant element of the home support. And one yet to lead a team to a significant success, such as promotion. If the answer to all this was a formation - 433 or some other variant - or selection or "how to set his team up" then Lee Johnson would be able to spot it. This is the stuff you can see, and that someone at his level knows inside out. I think the problem will be nothing to do with the stuff you can see and instead be almost intangible, infuriatingly elusive. It will be the sort of thing that comes about in an organisation as a result of other things being done and happening, things being done well and assuredly, by those in leadership roles, and in so doing, creating a sense of certainty, clarity and confidence amongst the squad. But if you were to pop up to Failand it might not be that obvious or straightforward to see. If you look at how we are playing, the manner of performances, it is too slow, to safe, too risk-averse. Too predictable, and so too easily countered by capable opponents. To open up teams banked across the field in front of you and not making defensive errors, someone has at some point to do something not expected, unpredictable, and potentially risky. To dare to win we have to be prepared to risk losing too. What gets in the way of this - and what inhibits potential being realised - is fear, and fear leads to lethargy (physically, and mentally), and players looking to some looking on like they are not trying. And players playing it safe, playing within themselves, trying not to make a terrible mistake rather than feeling free to express themselves. We do have an identity at the moment but it is one of fearfulness and confusion, uncertainty. An identity we don't want. Thing is, how do you embolden individuals and teams? Or, how do you not inhibit them in the first place? How do you set this lot free? I have no idea. Sign Eddie? Play two up top? Despite all the badges, and courses, and qualifications, and uefa b this and FA level whatever, you can do and aquire, football management/coaching continues to be both an art and a science. And I reckon Lee is ok, more than ok, on the science bit; where Lee is struggling, if he is struggling, will be on the intangible bit of football leadership that you cannot always see or put your finger on, the art of leading and managing footballers. It's a knack, something you cannot teach directly, and by and large, something you either have, or you don't. Certainly, some have it in spades, and some have it in teaspoons.
  4. What "incident" would this be, then? The one where two Mk don players behaved indecently, were fined by their clubs (and one was suspended), and "No City players were involved in any bad behaviour" according to LJ, but on a club sanctioned day out were on the same balcony as the miscreants, not misbehaving - that one?
  5. No, no. We are uniquely bad and terrible as a group of fans, quite unlike any other supporters anywhere else. Ever.
  6. Whoever, it's another Bristol City wag-wag-oops
  7. From the club's twitter, March 17 2016: "LJ: No City players were involved in bad behaviour on that balcony. They're guilty of a bit of naivety." Luke Ayling released a public apology, for any embarrassment caused to the club, and said: "I'm grateful for the thorough investigation into this matter made by the club, which has cleared my name of any indecent behaviour." It was two Mk Dons players behaving "indecently." And a club sanctioned day out for our lot.
  8. Fair enough. Think we want to choose who we make an example of a little more carefully next time (like Derby). This isn't the boy scouts
  9. They're tired now. It all that blinkin running around they do
  10. It’s working out better for Leeds than their Dave Hockaday experiment, I think we can say. Or indeed their raid on Barnsley for a young, up and coming coach. It might be worth us trying something similar, a bit of coaching class, at some point, now we've got everything else in place (we have got everything else in place, haven't we?)
  11. In which Ayling didn't piss, or whip his todger out. And wasn't the only one of ours on that balcony (not pissing, or flashing). If I remember correctly?
  12. No, he give them magic potion between the ear, belief. Our lot, tired in head
  13. Considering how many right backs we have been through since, and we had one good enough for bloody Bielsa and mighty Leeds. Oh dear
  14. I was sat in the Dolman, down that end, the East End end. I was a young 'un. I wish someone had said: "It won't always be like this."
  15. September 1979, we played Forest in the old 1st division. On my birthday. 1:1. And again in the league cup a few weeks later.
  16. It was a missed opportunity. A failure to capitalise. And when it went pear-shaped, as it also did for so many others - ie Boro, Wolves, Swansea, Burnley amongst others - we went in to a much steeper and longer decline, and unlike those four, we still awaiting a return to the top. Why so long adrift for us?
  17. In the 21st century, outside the PL, maybe; in 1970/80s football, don't think so. But don't ask me, take it up with Alan Dicks and the people running football clubs at that time....
  18. You would think so. You really would. But you go back to when we were both at the top, 76 - 80. And there you find: 77: City, 18th, average 23,500 Boro, 12th, average 21,400. 78: City, 17th, 23,300; Boro, 14th, 19,800. 79: City, 13th, av 23,300; Boro, 12th, av 18,400 80: City, 20th (relegated), av 18,900; Boro, 9th, av 18,700. Who is "bigger" during this time? And all that time, Alan Dicks is telling us: crowds need to be bigger, we need more money. Roll on a few years, and both City and Boro nosedive into crisis, but who recovers first/quickest? Long before Boro build a new ground, they leave us miles behind. Because they are "bigger"? I suggest it is not to do with crowds or income. Not at that time, as we can see. We can do the same for Norwich City: 77: they finish 16th, they average 22, 300 78: 13th, 19,300 79: 16th, 17,800 80: 12th, 17,200 Norwich bigger than us, back then? They have the infrastructure that Boro went on to build? Are they less of a football "backwater" back then? We can do the same for other similar size clubs who since that time, clubs we competed with 40 years ago, have got back to the top while we have done nothing. With about the same attendances (and therefore income, broadly speaking) four decades ago. My point is that we had, and have always had, enough of what you need to at least get to the top, but we have not done so, for decade after decade. While others, with broadly the same resources, managed to do so. And we have waited and waited, and if we are grumpy, and restless, and unreasonable, now, and beastly to our struggling managers, and the worst fans in the country, then the long long fruitless wait might explain this in part (my initial point I wanted to make). If, like Rovers, you have never been good enough, and never had enough of what it takes to get to the top, then it is different to us, who have been good enough, and do have enough, yet fail to realise this potential. Boro might be "bigger" now, but they were not always so, and it didn't stop them - or others - enjoying a bit of top class football. The story of Bristol City is one of wasted resource, and wasted potential and opportunity.
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