Mistaking Hoy for Foy and lambasting the very competent cyclist instead of the incompetent clown/buffoon/ref via social media sounds very much like the basis of an old school and non-PC Irish joke. Some more defensive slumbers on Thursday evening, like that we saw at the weekend or at WHL against PAOK and we’ll be setting ourselves up as the butt for some proper Ireland based humour.
Shamrock Rovers are the well-organised hard working whipping boys of our group, with the other teams generally helping themselves, especially in the home ties. The only side that’s struggled against them is us. With the exception of the game at Hearts, Redknapp seems to have put on the field players that are good enough to draw or narrowly lose in this competition. The game against Rovers at White Hart Lane was one where his cunning plan didn’t quite come good, Pav, Defoe and Giovani netted in quick succession in the second half to give us a 3-1 come from behind win.
Thursday’s selection will be typical by the sounds of it. Harry’s post-match comments on Sunday when posed a question along the lines of “a trip to Dublin is the last thing you want” (a bit harsh I thought) made it clear that he wasn’t going to risk anybody if he didn’t have to before the weekend. An eleven made up of those “who haven’t played lately” will I guess include the likes of Pav, Gio, Kane, Livermore, Carroll, Townsend, Bassong, Rose, Charlie and Niko. Probably not the team of EPL pin-up boys that the good folk of Dublin were hoping to see nor one good enough to inflict the gubbing we’ll very probably need if we’re going to go into the pot with Fulham, Foy’s Boys and the Manchesters for the next round. Even if Rubin Kazan lose to PAOK, by my maths there needs to be a 6 goal swing in our favour for us to go through. Personally, if I had one, I’d be tempted to put my house on a convenient draw taking place in Thessalonika so making the scoreline irrelevant, presumably what Harry thinks too.
So it’s goodbye to the Europa League in all probability. We reluctantly turned up to the party out of a feeling of duty, but left our best offerings in the fridge chilling ready for a potential invitation to an event next season where they give out bigger and better goody bags. It’s a dog’s breakfast of a competition but even so, a competition we were second favourites to win at the start. Our attitude towards it means that we won’t miss it but nor will those left miss us.
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