Often Partisan

Don’t Stop Believing

It would be very easy for me to start this blog with something trite, like the first few lines of “If” by Rudyard Kipling, but I didn’t want to patronise you, the reader. As many will know, I try to be an optimist and in the face of a five-nil thumping, it’s hard to be that way. However, unlike many it seems I do not believe all is lost. Not just yet, anyway.

I’m not going to comment on the game. I’ve not seen any of it, nor listened to it (I was otherwise engaged shopping with Mrs Almajir), and it would be unfair of me to make any assumptions based on second hand reports. I have read that we were awful, and that a cricket score wouldn’t have flattered Manchester United. I have no doubt that is true, but without seeing the game I can’t say for sure that I agree with it.

However, this wasn’t a game I believed we’d get anything out of. My prediction pre-match on twitter was “we’ll be lucky to get nil”. Whilst losing by five has damaged our goal difference badly, we’re still currently outside the relegation zone. We’ve got some easier games to come up, and we can get back into the swing of things hopefully on Wednesday. The stats weren’t with us for the Manchester United game; we haven’t scored at Old Trafford in open play in my lifetime, and with our current profligacy in attack we weren’t likely to score anything any time soon. Thus this was a game I’d marked down as no chance, and I hoped we wouldn’t get too hurt.

So now we’re nine days until the end of the transfer window; with a team in the dumps, a manager frustrated by lack of transfer activity and owners getting fidgety about stories in the press. Fans are filling messageboards online with bile, depression and ugly rhetoric as their frustration boils over. It appears that the four horseman of the apocalypse have saddled up and are currently taking residence at St Andrews, ready to bring the end of the world. It doesn’t have to be like that.

We’re potentially ninety minutes away from our first major final in ten years. Yes, a one goal deficit may be hard to overturn but we have the chance to do that. I don’t know if we can do it, but I know if we DO do it, things might appear much brighter for Birmingham City fans. A trip to Wembley, a date with destiny and maybe the chance to end the season with silverware will give the whole club a lift at a time when the black clouds of depression hang over Small Heath.

In addition to this, despite having been beaten by a massively superior Arsenal, a massively superior Manchester United, and having lost two games to inclement weather over the Christmas period, we’re still not in the bottom three. Yes, we’re clinging on to seventeenth but we’re still in control of our own destiny. We do have the players that can get us out of the mess we’re in; we just need to believe as fans and believe as a team that we can do it. I’ve noticed that when we concede recently heads drop off and on the pitch, and it’s that negativity that is killing us; not the formation.

I’m of the belief we can still bring someone in the before the end of the window; whilst I think Peter Pannu was misguided in his statement to the Birmingham Mail regarding speculation about the ownership of the club, I do believe that he and the rest of the board have the club’s best interests at heart; and I’m hopeful that they can bring someone in who can do a job for us for the rest of this season.

I know we’ve not hit the giddy heights of last season, and I know it’s been a struggle to get behind the team because we’ve been so dour at times this season, but the team need us the fans. A fired up crowd on Wednesday night from the off could help sweep us to Wembley; and then with the chance of domestic silverware on the horizon (and the subsequent trip to Europe) we might just become a more attractive prospect for players to join. As Journey sang, “Don’t Stop Believing”.

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2 Responses to “Don’t Stop Believing”

  • Gavin says:

    we might just become a more attractive prospect for players to join ……

    It suggests that we are offering better players the right money and they are saying no.

    I don’t believe that is the case. Blues board are still make half hearted attempts at getting players in. Charlie Adam for instance is an obvious great buy. £3.5m is an insult. Robbie Keane , they never even spoke to him etc.

    And as discussed before McLeish’s knowledge of La Liga is shit based on who has came in. Has any star from there or any other major league actually said no ?

    Blues board need to dig deep and offer the right money for a star or 2 who can save this club on their own.

    Here is a short listr of players of all prices to keep Blues up.

    Try Espanyol’s young winger, 23, who is probably (10m Euroish ) José Callejón. One of La Liga’s best players right now. Get in before he is worth twice that !

    Want a cheap striker with proven Prem experience and class , still in form despite his age Frederic Kanouté is the man .

    More of a gamble but affordable, Rondon a Venezualan from Malaga. Very strong athletic striker , only 21, who can finish too. Hard to value him but I would have thought as they paid 3.5m Euros for him in 2010 it would be affordable for Blues.

    If Blues are very broke Pierre Webo of Mallorca is a kind of cross between Jerome and Benitez. He misses loads but causes lots of goals, he is an incredible handful with a massive work rate, strong + quick like Jerome, agile like Benitez. Was rumoured to go to Prem for £2m. Has battered Valencia 2 seasons running.

    Or a big money (20m Eurosish) absolute cert, well if Villa can, Fernando Llorente from Athletic Bilbao, a Prem player all over who would score loads + go up in value.

    OR ask Valancia for a loan of Isco + Paco before they are worth £60m between them. I think they’d agree. As it may help both parties.

  • andy says:

    Well I said in December that if we weren’t lucky then I could see us cut adrift at the bottom of the league by March, a month away an whilst this is still a distinct possibility the fact that we aren’t already there should be some encouragement.

    On the down side our goal difference has just taken a hammering and with a visit to Stamford Bridge on the cards before then we could conceivably have the worst goal difference in the league, I have always thought that this was a better guide to the quality of a team than the vagaries of the points column and so without a revival in our defensive form then I can see a huge struggle ahead.

    But never mind that, we’ve got a semi-final on Wednesday, the league can go to hell!


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