The 462nd Dentist’s Diary – End of Season 2015

The Closed season is here and the FC fans are as mixed up as ever!!


Yesterday, half way through the first half, I looked round and lamented the empty seats that denoted those of you who decided to sit in the garden and give it a miss, having no doubt concluded for this season at least, enough was enough! That made me think of a famous catch phrase of good old David Doyle-Davidson when he used to say, “You’re missing nothing”. Boy was that true yesterday! I wouldn’t worry about it at all however, because why should you turn up when the team consistently fail to! I know it was the last game and a dead rubber once again, but it would have been nice to have something to enthuse about. Lee Radford described it as a ‘Gallant defeat’ but for most of us it was just ‘same old’ really, bags of effort but a lack of skills, mental tenacity and organisation. Over 30 games played and some of ‘em still can’t catch a ball!

That was the most boring game I have seen for ages against another team who like us had nothing to play for and went through the motions. The Super 8’s might have been a success for the top 4 Clubs but for the rest of us there has been precious little to play for in the last 5 games. Talking to Rovers fans last night, for all they won their last 7 games, it has been a pretty boring and flat experience for them lot too.

And against a very average Catalan team, who excluding the Magic Weekend fixture, had won on English soil just once previously, (against bottom placed Wakefield), what an abysmal way it was to end a season! All the razzamatazz of the half time parade was fine but I just wanted to leave with something to cherish, something to remember and with just a bit of hope, but being an FC fan you realise that in the end hope is just the veneer with which you cover your disappointment. So, a very average season concluded with a performance that was so inept in the first half hour or so, it was hard to believe we were actually watching a league game. Our skill set is shocking!

It was obvious by the player’s demeanour that they had little to play for and that shocking start when we went 20-0 down saw us then only improved in patches as the game wore on. Yes we scored some good tries and Lineham showed what a great finisher he is, but all that was totally eclipsed by what went on in between and that was….precious little!! I guess standing back from it all, it smacked of a lot of players who were ‘already on the beach’ or in the case of some of our players, already on the way to mad Monday in Amsterdam. As a fan I’m so pleased that for this season at least, it’s all over, because year in year out, I feel that I’m waiting and hoping for something that simply isn’t going to happen and as if not to disappoint me….once again this year it hasn’t!

It was however a lovely autumn afternoon as the sun shone on Heritage Day at the KC and at least we all got a bit of a tan as we sat in the East Stand, mostly in silence, and watched the last rites of the 150th campaign played out in front of us. I guess it’s a fact that few of those seasons, even in the bad old days, can have ended with more of a whimper than this one did! Yesterday we watched a game that we could have won and yet a game that was inept in both its rugby and its officiating (Silverwood was crap), and although if Sneyd had gone back to his old protracted backwards facing kicking style and we had got just 3 of those failed conversions from 6 attempts we would have won, in the end I was honestly glad when it was all over.

It was of course, as the last home game of the season, also a day for goodbyes with a big ‘Well done and hope to see you back one day to Jordan Rankin’, a ‘thanks a lot mate and go make a name for yourself’ to Mickey Paea, a better luck next time to Sentimata Sa and a ‘Good luck, you could be a real star one day, but it’s time to grow up a bit’, to Tom Lineham! But, whatever our thoughts and sentiments, after a pretty horrible display it was still good to see the almost stoic nature of the FC fans reflected in how many stayed behind at the end to give everyone a clap.

Jordan Rankin brought his kit bag out onto the field and threw his boots and training kit into the crowd and it was obvious by the way he was with the fans, that he really does ‘get it’! He said on Twitter, “Can’t say thank you enough to all involved at the FC. You have made this easily the best two years of rugby I’ve had. Forever grateful!”

As for the game, well the whole performance was shoddy, riddled with mistakes and in the first half at least it resembled a shambolic training run in which the Catalan side with 6 reserves playing, always just had the jump on us. But that’s the Super 8’s when you’re where we are, there is just nothing to play for but pride and if you went to the match I’ll let you draw your own conclusions on that one! We all sat there basking in the sunshine watching another abject refereeing display and marvelling as to how a team of professional players could, at times, look so disorganised. Catalan were a poor team too believe me! It was all quite bemusing, particularly in a game that everyone knew we needed to impress in so that we could at least send the potential season ticket purchasers home with something to think about and remember!

However whatever the Coach said to them before the game, once out on the field it went to out of the window and many did as they liked, we scored some good tries, but blew countless good chances as some players seemed to lose the plot completely. We bunched in the line, the passing was slow, ponderous and predictable, while the defence too often waited to welcome the advancing player rather than going in to meet them full on. As I say all training ground stuff and what we have seen a few times of late, but I guess we should have expected little else.

There were positives and you couldn’t fault the effort throughout, particularly in the way we took the game to Catalan down the middle in the third quarter and I also thought that Jordan Abdull had a good game and that he is starting to take on the mantle of good loose forward. Tom Lineham showed us what we will be missing with some devastating finishing, which over shadowed some poor defensive play wide out. Wattsy tried hard and Mini never stopped having a go, but forced the ball a time or two in his frustration at the lack of supporting runners. Paea gave 100% , Logan too looks really sharp when he gets a bit of space to work in and Houghton tried and tried all afternoon. However for me Sneyd was really disappointing, Thompson didn’t look fit and Whiting looked decidedly ring rusty.

Farewell to the flying pig!

But it’s that attitude bit that’s the worry and it has been a re-occurring theme for me in here for months. I ain’t one for Coach bashing, but the season is over so please take this in the objective and observational way that it is intended, but 4 wins in the 15 games since 4th June would have seen most coaches, in most sports, out of the door!! In fact in total we had only 5 wins from 14 home games!!! Add to that the fact that we have lost 8 games by 7 points or less this term….again and finished 14 points behind 4th and it’s hardly a good record. We did finish higher than last season, but still (in the regular season) a place behind where we finished in both the seasons under the much maligned Peter Gentle.

All the while excuses come and go, injuries, bad luck, referee’s, the bounce of the ball, poor goal kicking etc. etc. etc. but in the end we all know a lot of it is really just down to attitude, because we have a good squad with some really skilful players. For me, great guy though he is, Lee is, I think, a lucky man to still be in post and I guess I should also add that for many of us it’s hard to know why a man with the obvious passion of Adam has spent so much on infrastructure and attracted such good signings and yet decided to ‘stick rather than twist’!

Lee has to realise that the fans feel let down and comments like yesterdays where he stated that he thinks this has been a 7 out of 10 season are hard to take for the many who have been completely disillusioned by the 2015 campaign. However, whether we like it or not that failure to gauge properly the demeanour of the fans that brought the debacle of the merger sees Adam deciding to ‘stick’ and there’s little we can do about it. I think therefore we move on and our next big challenge as fans is to rally round, do what we have to and get the Club through what is likely to be a very tough winter for us all! The amount of disenfranchised and fed up supporters seems to be running at a level not seen since the Lloyd era, but if we love our Club, then we have to hold the line and try to understand; but more of that later.

Elsewhere in the Super Eights, things were, thankfully, less tedious and it was certainly a brilliant finale to the regular season. I always felt that that the 8x8x8 split was not a particularly good idea simply because the bottom Clubs in the Super Eights had nothing to play for at all, but at the top it was, in the end, quite amazing and the way that it worked out must have even exceeded the expectations of the ‘Every Minute Counts brigade’ at the RL. No doubt that drama will, in the final resume of the 2015 season, completely overshadow the deficiencies of the new set up as they were experienced by teams such as Hull FC. However, there is little doubt that I and I guess many other RL fans sat at home marvelled as to how such a contrived structure could end up with, well….. such an uncontrived finish. It really was high drama and with the helicopter carrying the ‘hub cap’ flying over the suburbs of Wigan and then when in sight of the JJB Stadium having to high tail it back to Huddersfield, the night as a spectacle was complete.

How ironic it was too that had Wigan beaten us by the margin they expected two weeks ago, then they would have won the Plate, but our valiant effort with a makeshift team full of youngsters kept their points difference down and I guess, made Leeds’ achievement possible! Of course there are lots of ‘ifs’ and buts’ in these scenarios, but if not the deciding factor, our performance at the JJB was at least one of the defining ones!

However I loved the two TV games this week past and for them to conjure up a situation where all 4 play-off contenders were dependent on a game that was decided in the last second, of what was the last regular game was pretty amazing. Despite everything and the fact we all hate them, I guess you have to admire Leeds, but as a complete aside do you ever watch Tom Briscoe playing for them and wish against wish that we had done more to keep him! I do, but keeping your best players and them wanting to stay is what good teams do!! Let’s face it you don’t get many British Rhino’s players at the top of their game, wanting to move to Hull FC do you?

On Sunday Morning I joined around 120 other fans at the memorial service for FC Supporters, officials and ex players that have passed away over the last year. It was a touching and poignant occasion brilliantly presided over by the Club Chaplain Tony Cotson. Fans lit candles and Chris Green read the lesson, while James Clark gave an address.

The Rev. Tony Cotson addresses the fans from pitch-side.

It was a great event and well done to all concerned. As an aside it was a real shock to note just how many ex players had passed away in the last year too including, Jack Kershaw, Stan Cowan, ‘Bluey’ Mackie and Terry Hollingdrake.

A good crowd gathered to remember those fans and players that had passed on.

How good it was to see Jack Logan nominated for the Albert Goldthorpe Medal for young player of the year, he’s got some stiff competition and won’t win it because he’s come too late to the piece by only really making his mark in the last few games, but it’s great for him to be in with a shout. As Jack himself said on Twitter, “Buzzing to be shortlisted for the Albert Goldthorpe rookie of the year! Just an honour to be nominated!”

While I’m on about end of season awards, our ceremony this year should, for me, be a straight forward shoot out between Mini and Wattsy, while Jordan Abdull should be vying for Young Player of the Year with Jack Logan, don’t you think? It would be Abdull for me simply because he’s got the games in. Over at Salford (a club I have a closer look at later) they had their presentations last Tuesday at a fans Luncheon. At this event their Player of the Year Award was presented to Scott Taylor. Despite the fact that he was only on loan this season from Wigan and had made it clear from May onwards that (although being offered more money from Koukash), he wouldn’t be signing for them, he has still developed into both a Coaches and a fans favourite and we really are getting a top quality player next term.

Everyone associated with Scott cites his attitude off the field as much as his ability on it and I think he will be a great acquisition. In addition to the POTY accolade he appears to be in the lead for the Red Devil’s Supporters Player of the Season award too. As I said last week, although he has not garnered the sort of adulation and anticipation that Manu and ‘Frank the Tank’ have been attracting, Scott is a blooming great prop and I’m really looking forward to seeing him play. He loves Hull FC and I believe that he will become a big fans favourite. However beware Scott; being a fans favourite at the KC is a whole different ball game and brings totally different pressures when compared with that status at Salford!

While I’m on new arrivals, it was interesting to see this week that Radford came out again and hinted that the Clubs recruitment for 2016 is over, with still no cover at hooker. That bit worries me as you know, but otherwise little changes and in preparation for a season when we really do need to get off to a strong start, there are, because of International calls, already issues about when players can report for the start of the preseason preparations. Pritchard is likely to be needed for Samoa and Manu and Fornua for Tonga, (along with Mickey Paea) in the post season Internationals and for me it could well be late November at the earliest, before we have everyone out there training. Several need remedial surgery too, but with some Clubs like Warrington only giving their players 4 weeks off and with such a big intake again at the FC, its hardly an ideal start for us in what is a defining season, is it?

Talking of the significance of next season, my comments last week about the state of the Club seem to have worried a few readers and rattled the cages of a few others. Some had spoken to Adam themselves at the Memorial event and joined me in my concerns, others heard his plea at the 150th event last Monday, while some who hadn’t experienced either, chose to think that it was all just hogwash and just me scaremongering. The thing is of course I’m certainly not admitting to the latter, because that’s the last thing I do in here and anyone who reads this diatribe regularly will know that I love Hull FC and just long for the ‘sunny days’ when all is well, injuries are few, we win most weeks and our owner is happy. I really don’t do sensationalising! I never delight in our problems or issues because you don’t do that when you feel the way I do about the Club. However that said my utopian view above never quite happens does it, in fact with the exception of the odd Diary before a Cup final, most weeks this has been, for almost 10 years, a biased but realistic look at where we are, or indeed where we aren’t, rather than where I believe we should be or were I would like us to be!

Of course I speculate about signings, injuries and player issues, that’s what fans are about, however I would never ‘fatalise’ about the very existence of the Club just for effect or impact, but by the same rule the thought of Hull FC not being in my life anymore is something I just can’t contemplate. So when it comes to issues surrounding our very existence I certainly wouldn’t make that sort of stuff up!

But, as I said last week, just basing my comments on what I know for sure, I repeat here that I do worry about the direction in which our Club is going at present. That situation and if you like the ‘gut feelings’ that surround it make me say that where we can as fans, we should close ranks, stop wittering and try to support the owner, if for nothing else than for the sake of our Clubs very existence. Last week largely unsubstantiated rumours of our demise continued to circulate and Martyn Sadler didn’t help when he tweeted, “Just spoken to Hull Chairman Adam Pearson. My advice to Hull fans is to get your season tickets for next season & fill the ground”. That comment immediately sent the hares on twitter running again! Then, as if to reflect on what he had said, twenty minutes later he re-tweeted, “Don’t misinterpret my last tweet. I think it’s going to be a great year for Hull in 2016. The fans should be very happy”. To that repost most observers said something like ‘yeh, yeh not too convincing a retraction that Martyn!’ So it’s not just me!

On other matters, I was interested, nay quite amazed, when the Club said that they were looking to offer Joe Westerman a new contact and that, despite rumours of Warrington being interested in paying a fee for him; I say that because that’s not what several very well connected people have told me, That one ain’t over yet and we’ll watch and see I guess!!

I see that Leigh owner Derek Beaumont has revealed that he has 4 big signings lined up to ensure, he says, that Leigh get themselves into Super League at the next time of asking. The Manchester Evening News also reports that Beaumont says he will, “ignore the salary cap restrictions” to continue to build a promotion team. As Neil Hudgell once said, “There does appear to be a deal of arrogance around them” and surely that can’t be allowed. Last night the same paper tweeted “Just confirmed by Derek Beaumont that. Rangi Chase, Harrison Hansen, Cory Patterson & Reni Maitua will be at Leigh in 2016” For me, it’s about time the RL either has a salary cap that is properly policed or give it up and go back to the free for all we had in the old days! Let’s see what Redhall do about that!!

Well it was good news this week when, in the run up to the £1m game , it was announced that Wakefield Trinity Wildcats expect to be staying at their historic Belle Vue ground next season. Last Wednesday Wildcats chairman Michael Carter confirmed the club are close to completing an agreement with the Bank of Ireland and its representatives O’Hara’s that will allow them to continue as tenants at a reduced rent.

Two months ago I commented in here that Carter had described the rent being paid as unsustainable and had made arrangements for The Wildcats to ground share with Dewsbury Rams next season after giving their landlords notice of the club’s intention to quit when the current tenancy agreement runs out in December. Now things have changed as on Friday Carter said, “We have got an agreement in principle with O’Hara’s and the Bank of Ireland and we are waiting for the legal documents to be drawn up, hopefully we can get that tied up and we will be good to go for next year.” He added: “We have got a reduction in rent we would not be signing up to it if we had not got that. I don’t want to specify what that reduction is, but we have got a reduction on the terms of the original lease.” So the last time we went to the old Belle Vue Ground won’t now necessarily be on a defeat as was looking likely after that shock turn around there this season. All Wakey now have to do is survive the £1m game and stay in Super League, because I know which of the two grounds between Belle Vue and Odsal I prefer going to!

Sometimes when you’re a bit worried about your own Club its worth looking at what others in trouble are doing because invariably you will find someone who is worse off than yourselves and since Marwan Koukash took over at Salford it’s been a bit of a three ringed circus with more ins and outs that a cuckoo clock. If we think our Club is a bit of a roller coaster at times, consider Salford’s season. Driven by what is perhaps a morbid curiosity, I have followed their progress or otherwise for months during which time three different coaches have already been and gone since Marwan Koukash took charge and mapped out some lofty aspirations. Player turnover is something that is commonplace over there and yet again for the Red Devil fans it will certainly be another busy off season.

Regular daily departures and arrivals will again have a revolving door feel about them and more new player’s means yet another new team for 2016. Marvellous Marwan seems to be making all the right noises and remains totally supportive, but last week he lowered his guard, held his hand up and conceded a costly outlay on the likes of Gareth Hock, Tim Smith, Kevin Locke and Rangi Chase, hadn’t worked out as he had hoped and while Hock, Locke and Smith have been long gone – the clock now appears to be ticking for Rangi Chase after a season of frustration. Chase started the season in great form and against us at their place he produced a play that immediately became a global internet sensation as it went viral across the world; in that sort of form he’s a magician but on the other hand he appears to also have more baggage than British Airways.

There can be no doubting Chase’s class, but I wouldn’t want him anywhere near our Club and I think we probably had a ‘great escape’ when our deal to bring him to the KC fell through. I think that he’s a bloody liability who has, already this season, been linked with Wigan, Saints and Warrington and suffered a 7 match suspension following a clash with Huddersfield’s Brett Ferres on Good Friday. Maybe it is now better for Salford and Chase to go their separate ways as long as Rangi’s isn’t towards us!

He has been popular with the Salford fans but there have been times when he has looked unhappy, worried and somewhat uncomfortable. In fact his state of mind dictated that there were times when Salford decided not to risk him. There have been nights, I’m told, when he has been seen prowling the car park of such grounds as Headingley, totally perplexed at a non start.

Chase is certainly a complex character but his qualities are special and there by hangs a conundrum that over the year has haunted a very special talent and yet as always with these characters, any team with him in it is bound to pose more threat than the one without him. Until that is it starts to all unravel….again.

Then as Chase started to implode in came Kevin Locke, again promising much but expected to perhaps deliver so much more, as again a fairy tale start quickly turned into another farce. Marwan Koukash then decided that he couldn’t control things anymore and brought in rugby director Tim Sheens who seems to have been good for steadying the boat at the Red Devils. He has a wealth of experience, loads of contacts and can certainly spot a player. Tim has played a key role in deciding who comes in and who moves on with Fages, Hanson and Paterson all leaving with Chase. That’s a lot of bloody talent and a lot of varying personalities to all be unsettled, so there must be more wrong down Eccles way, than just their position in the League. One thing’s for sure, just like the situation at Hull FC next season is a massive one for Salford – they must get it right and Marwan Koukash’s faith in Sheens is paramount. Having said all that, this season for Salford has many similarities with ours, it was billed as a big one yet underachievement has again prevailed and presented problems, however luckily we haven’t had the amount of ego led issues they seem to have. But, at Salford perhaps as at Hull FC, there could still be more casualties before the dust settles.

I was thinking that perhaps I wouldn’t be getting a quote of the week this time around, as during the last 7 days nothing jumped out for me, but I need not have worried as good old Assam Allam our Landlord at the KC came up with a classic on the Reuters site last Saturday. There, he said in an interview about his dislike of Jeremy Corbyn, “If many of the Labour MPs want to defect, the priority for me is to support either a new party or a new look Liberal party” That’s not bad going is it? He has the Labour leader down to the KC and supports that party to the tune of hundreds of thousands, then he gives the Tory MP for East Yorkshire a five figure sum towards his election campaign and now he’s about to become a Liberal Democrat! My old Mum’s terminology of, “Anywhere for a small apple” springs to mind, as do the words Tunes and Looney! Boy oh boy, if he was your old uncle you’d keep him locked up!

A big well done to Hull Wyke who are not only witnessing the building of their new Club house at Cropton Road, which is coming on really well, but who also found out this week that they have been nominated for a major award. They are in fact in the running for Club of the year in the RL Community awards, which are to be announced before the Grand Final in the Captains Lounge at Old Trafford on 10th October. Good luck to them, the amount of work and effort that goes on down at Hull Wyke certainly puts them in a good position to succeed and they should be very proud of the progress they have made!

So once again to Codgers Corner and this week after it was confirmed that The Bradford Bulls will be contesting the £1m game I want to take a trip back to a more recent times and have a look at a really memorable game from this century, when we unexpectedly overcame what was then one of the best teams in Super League, on their own Odsal turf. I ain’t looking forward to going back there next season, so as I said earlier, I’ll be hoping that Wakey do the business but earlier in this Century trips to the converted rubbish tip in West Yorkshire were an ‘occupational hazard’ with victories there few and far between.

It was April 2004 when we sat fourth in the Super League and went to play the League Leaders searching for our first victory over the West Riding outfit in that competition. That Friday night over 2000 Hull FC fans made their way across the M62 to probably the most inhospitable Stadium in the country. The last time we had won there was in fact back in 1994 when Royce Simmons lead us to a 32-30 victory and the home teams current form left us all wondering if we would ever win again there.

When we arrived in West Yorkshire the news was not good as captain Richie Barnett was a late withdrawal with a virus to be replaced by his name-sake, Richie Barnett Junior. Shaun McRae shuffled the back division and moved winger Colin Best into the centre, allowing RBJ to come in on the wing to play against his cousins Leon and Karl Pryce. Onto the bench came another youngster Danny Hill whilst an unexpected late switch saw Chris Chester who was named on the bench and Peter Lupton who was starting, switch roles.

It was certainly obvious to all of us that the Bulls had identified young Richie as a weakness as they immediately launched an aerial bombardment in his direction and after just a minute although he looked to have a Deacon bomb covered Shaun Briscoe got in the way and between the two of them the ball was spilled. We survived but a minute later Deacon was at it again but this time Richie managed to just field the kick and the situation was defused. Then, against the run of play, we swept downfield and a wonderful break by Yeaman saw him held up over the line as the Bradford defence struggled to cover the move. Back came the Bulls as Deacon hoisted another high kick which Barnett this time dealt with by tipping it into touch. After Hape had lost the ball over the try line at last Bradford’s pressure paid off when the same player cantered in on the short side, with our defence found seriously lacking.

At 6-0 we were certainly under the cosh and it was only a great tackle from Briscoe that stopped Karl Pratt from scoring before two separate Bradford players were held up over the line. It was certainly looking grim for Hull but we battled away before some un-necessary foul play by the home team saw Cooke convert two quick penalties, to open our account. We were finding it hard going, but Paul King was in the thick of things and was unlucky to be penalised for laying on in the tackle as effortlessly Deacon stroked over the resultant kick to stretch the Bulls lead to 8-4.

Then, as Hull were pushed back by a kick from Leon Pryce, teenager Hill made a good break back up field and King set up a chance for Horne Richard then brilliantly passed onto Briscoe for the full back to squeeze in at the corner and score. Cooke missed the conversion but at 8-8 we were level in a game in which we had been under pressure for most of the time. That score remained until half time, but after the break Bradford came out really fired up and threatened to take the game away from us. It took just two minutes for them to re-take the lead as Leon Pryce put Deacon in and after he had converted his own try a penalty from the same player stretched the Bulls lead to 16-8.

Things were looking bad for us but we battled on as Richard Horne started to get the measure of the Bradford defence and looked to be creating gaps at will. Hull quickly spread the ball left in centre field and when Chester shot through a gap created by Horne, Lupton and Raynor combined and Briscoe was on hand again to take a return pass, and crash in for his second try. At 16-14 the fans had new heart and we sang and danced on the terracing to the accompaniment of chants of “Who are Ya” from the Bulls supporters.

Bradford laid siege to our line and we had to drop out twice amidst tremendous pressure, however we survive, conceding just another two points from a penalty and almost scored ourselves when Cooke just failed to hold a flapping pass from Whiting. Then, completely against the run of play, we scored another try. Again we shifted the ball right and again Horne was involved, this time Chester shot through an even bigger hole and passed onto Briscoe who dived in beneath the posts, to score his hat trick try and with the conversion, we led 18-16. With ten minutes to go both Best and King went close in moves involving Dowes, Carvell and McMenemy but it was that man Briscoe who sent the Bradford fans streaming to the exits as he crossed for the 4th time to break their hearts. On this occasion a desperate kick over the defensive line from Deacon was spotted and dealt with by Cooke, whose short pass out was pounced on by Briscoe and he screamed away downfield to put the final nail in the Bulls coffin. At 18-26 we had an 8 point margin and Bradford never looked like getting anywhere near our line in that last two minutes.

It was a famous victory and one the fans savoured as they sang and chanted to their heroes down on the pitch below them. Amazingly after scoring 4 tries Briscoe was not named Hull’s man of the match as that accolade went to the great Richard Swain who played like a human dynamo all night! It was a monumental evening and one to really savour as we drove back home having cemented our standing as fourth in the tables by beating the Bulls on their own patch.

You know thinking about and recording my thoughts on those fantastic games from days gone by, I do tend to dwell a bit on the fact that if I’m perfectly honest, I don’t really know whether I enjoy my rugby as much now as I did back then. I can’t say what it is, but at times, modern rugby bores me, and although I love Hull FC to bits and will follow them till the day I die, I don’t seem to have as much appetite for it these days. I guess games like yesterdays don’t help that malaise either, I just hope I can get my appetite back next season.

Well, that’s it for this year and I’m having a break, so THERE WON’T BE A DIARY NEXT WEEK. I’m just having a week off and although I toyed with the possibility of taking a longer break, I really do think we face some tough times ahead and so I’ve had a think about the winter and although it can be a bit of a slog at times finding news, we’ll keep going. I still enjoy writing my thoughts down every Monday but as I say I really believe that perhaps this next few months have the potential to be ‘Interesting’ for us all, so I’ll press on if you all want to continue to read the Diary. The next Diary will therefore be out on Monday 12th October, when I hope you will join me again as I plough on to Christmas. Thanks as always for reading another offering in a week when we finally saw the end of a frustrating and at times disheartening season and if Mini and Wattsy don’t sweep the board at the Player of the Year Awards next week, I’ll eat my hat!

Thanks to my pal Joe at blackandwhites for all his help and for all your encouragement and comment throughout this past season when the readership of this drivel has been at times the highest we have ever had. Our team has of course flattered to deceive once again and by and large it’s been a thoroughly disappointing affair….again. However I firmly now believe that next season isn’t just the usual ‘hope for the future’ ‘Believe’ type one, because everything points to it being one of do or die and make or break! I’ll be doing all I can to find out what’s happening and keep you all posted so at least over the coming months we will see how things unfold together, but in the meantime,
Thanks for all your brilliant support,
Keep Believing and

Faithfully Yours