Well, we were never going to win were we?
Why have Leeds proved more resilient and started so well this season? Well if you were there on Friday night you’d know the answer to that one; it’s because on this occasion although the team that has for so long been revered as an attacking force didn’t hit top gear, they were just so hard to beat!! We could all see why it is no coincidence that they have managed to concede just 132 points in 14 games, but I was heartened by the performance we put in but we came home empty handed; then again we were always going to weren’t we?
At times like this the fans have to rally round the Club and long message board thread on the subject of ‘Radford Out’ do nothing but add to the parlous nature of the whole situation. Anyway having put the question to our owner I can say once again with some certainty that he has no intentions of changing Coaches! Those keyboard warriors might have a point that is well meant and indeed pretty pertinent, but changing the coach at this point in the season and indeed fans publically demanding it, with players confidence so shot, helps no-one.
There were signs of some real spirit and energy on Friday and although there was still a lack of inventiveness and guile, we had a real go and the fact that Leeds twice went for conversions on penalties in our 20 when 12 points up, showed, I think, that it certainly wasn’t the drubbing they and many casual observers had expected during the previous week.
So, if you’re looking to find loads of that negative rhetoric about the game on Friday in here this week, then you’ll certainly be disappointed. Like all fans I find my ongoing weekly judgement coloured by our most recent performance and quite frankly I was pleasantly surprised and not a bit relieved that at least we kept the score down. Of course our current plight is all about getting points and although we didn’t get them, it’s also safe to say no one who went to Leeds really thought we had a chance of doing that anyway, did they? So, I have to say that the way we scrapped and battled was a pleasant and unexpected surprise for this fan, but now the big one looms!
Well at least Gareth Ellis now understands what I and many more of you out there have accepted for some time as he said on Friday, “This is harder than I expected. When I joined we talked top four but now it’s possibly relegation. It’s something we can’t ignore. If Bradford Bulls get their points back we could be in that mix”
Relegation??? You heard it here first, before, last week Adam mentioned it, on Friday it was the Captain and now everyone’s talking about it! Languishing in 10th place with 5 away games on the bounce coming up; we should I think be a little afraid!
I wasn’t exactly in tears on Saturday night at 7-00pm, but I have to say I was well depressed and it was nothing at all to do with Hull City either!! We had a real go in that second half, you couldn’t fault our effort but as the hooter went I reflected on the fact that I am fed up of this season already! Yes, it was better, but it has to be when it’s a Derby, if an FC player can’t ‘get up’ for that then you might as well stay in bed…..permanently!!!
You see for me, although against all the odds we came back and made a good game of it, we simply can’t kill games off as once again we let it slip and whether we play well or we don’t, I’ve just had it with losing. That was a poor Rovers team that ‘fiddled’ a win as our stupid mistakes, drifting focus and fatigue caused by a daft sending off, saw us beaten.
As fans there is only one certainty now and that’s the fact that it’s quite possible ‘we ain’t seen nothing yet’ and we really do now have to back the Club we love and stick together like never before.
Better Drilled, fitter, with a better game plan and much more idea, Wigan stitched us up and rolled us over on Friday, when despite several injuries to key personnel their youngsters shone, to outclass us and ensure that we were never really in it!
Unlike the Wakey match where we were a superior team and should have won, this time around we were beaten by a much better outfit, made up of young kids led around the field by two quality half backs full of skill and strength. However for me, strangely that scenario made this latest reversal more palatable than that loss last Sunday! But the fact that we are fast losing any confidence, still making stupid mistakes, still giving away penalties at the end of the oppositions sets, often can’t make 10 yards with a touch finding penalty and fail to match teams for energy and enthusiasm, is bloody worrying.
Even though Mrs R and I watched the game in more opulent surroundings than usual, it was still a miserable night! They dominated the ruck, ran hard and in addition to those half-backs, the forwards pulverised us as Mcillorum played with such pace around acting half, our defence simply found it almost impossible to live with him. You know, we are in big trouble at present, perhaps nothing a stonking win in the Magic game on Saturday won’t put right, but for me that’s more of a dream than a reality.
Quite frankly as I write this in the early hours of Saturday morning, I’m still in awe of a Wigan that can with so many missing ‘stars’, play like they did, they are simply light years in front of us and it was I guess, when you remove all the angst, good to watch them. However I am still all the while thinking it’s hard to imagine us sinking much lower and I really don’t honestly know where we go from here, 7 Diary’s ago I spoke about relegation and got heavily criticised for it, now everyone inside the Club and outside it, are doing the same.
“What we have to do is make sure we don’t turn up with any thoughts that this is going to be a stroll, because it certainly isn’t.
“We need the win, we need to get on a roll and it will take a good performance to get the two points.”
Thus said Danny Houghton before the game and perhaps that says it all really!! Once again before the match everyone was talking a good game, yet after it we all trudged home having experienced little else but the same old, same old! We’ve all seen it so many times before and quite frankly the demeanour of the fan base indicates that perhaps we’ve all had enough!!!!
With just 10 points from our block of home games, Wigan coming up as our last one in that run and without a win away from home, I’m afraid, as we slipped to probably our worst display of another pretty iffy season, my predicted Doomsday scenario of getting dragged into the relegation mire is fast becoming, if not yet a reality, then a distinct possibility.
You can all laugh and you probably did when I predicted this scenario at the start of the campaign, but I honestly believe we are in trouble here and when I look at our next 3 games Wigan, Hull KR and Leeds I can’t see us winning any of them and then the mire is just where we’ll be!! It’s not just that, but people are fed up, bored with it all and starting to walk away and it will be interesting to see who is left on the terraces when we return to playing at the KC in July.
Bradford are winning (and requesting their points back), Wakefield have now won and look capable of securing more points, Salford and the Dobbins will start winning while Catalan are fast coming up on the rails, so we have to do something and quick, because that sort of display is simply unacceptable to us all and yet it’s the sort of stuff we have come to expect week in week out for years. Yes we lost Westerman and with him most of our midfield energy and thrust but our lack of big game players to rescue the situation, our at times appalling game management and failure to dictate the pace to suit our players ability, plus that old failure of an abject refusal to rise to the occasion against the ‘smaller’ teams, did for us again……….. big style. I’m just fed up of it all!