Bolton away on a rainy Wednesday night. A fixture as full of importance as it is empty of glamour. The presence or not at the game of Fabrice Muamba has dominated the early game previews, given the new perspective he must’ve gained on life in the last couple of months, I’m not sure a half empty Reebok would seem that attractive but maybe he likes the pies.
And talking of taking a fresh look at things, the FA’s decision to go down the Woy road means that Harry will all of a sudden have a much clearer idea of where his immediate future lies. Without trivialising what happened to the Bolton midfielder at WHL in March, to Redknapp the last couple of days might be like waking from a coma (it’s certainly not a version of Sleeping Beauty), “‘ere, when I mentally left this team in February we were third and flying, just turned over the Geordies and playin’ fantastic, some of our movement was t’riffic. What’s this now though? Maximum points needed to finish fourth? Who’s been in charge while I’ve been under?”
And that’s what we’ve all been wondering. Some odd transfer window buys have been followed by some rum selections and some strange tactics and so here we are. Bolton away and only three points will do.
Despite his protestations Redknapp has got to be gutted by the turn of events at the FA. If nothing else the prospect of having to continue to leave the house at 5am every morning before jumping in the car would do me in. We need him to forget all that though. From somewhere he’s got to find the selection, motivational and tactical skills required for us to achieve what would be our first away win of 2012 and (I think) our first ever league win at the Reebok.
In the lino getting the over-the-line decision right and in Walker’s free-kick there were signs on Sunday that things were starting to tip our way. We’re going to need more than ‘starting’ though if we’re going to get the result we need. If our ‘big’ players, Van der Vaart, Modric and Bale want to be guaranteed Champions League football next season then their best move is to make sure we chase the Gooners all the way to the line.
Mike Dean is the ref. COYS
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