Southend 2 Yellows 1

I have to confess, there was a point during last Saturday’s draw with Cheltenham, as we passed around them and through them, that a little bit of me didn’t want us to score. A goal would have taken us deep into the play-offs and the promotion chase would have well and truly been on.

Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t want us to lose and if we could guarantee promotion, particularly via a play-off final, I would take it. But, to tell you the truth, I’m a little bit footballed out.

You know you’re getting old when you realise there’s a generation of Oxford fans who never went to The Manor, well now, there’s an emerging generation that has never seen an season where nothing was expected and mid-table nothingness was delivered. Last season was thrilling, the season before was thrilling, the season before was that was supposed to be thrilling but was shit, the season before was thrillingly shit and the season before that was just shit. I’m enjoying the way we’re playing at the moment but I could do without shuttling the thrilling/shit axis for a bit.

On Monday, we were force fed the faux drama of the transfer window. £200 million was spent in January, of which about half was spent in the last hour on three players. Are we supposed to believe that there isn’t some degree of orchestration to satisfy the ‘everything about football is dramatic’ narrative?

Sky had a man Stoke reporting on the drama lava spewing out from the Brittannia Stadium. Night had fallen and he had a handful of people hanging around gurning at the camera.

“It’s been a very quiet day in Stoke hasn’t it?” he said to one
“Yeah, but Tony [Pulis] is in there doing some deals” speculated the fan “he always does something surprising, don’t you worry.”

By 11pm he’d sent out Eiður Guðjohnsen on loan.

Tuesday came round and the side show of actual football chuntered into view. I struggled to really care whether we’d won, drawn or lost to Southend. We’re pretty safe, and I’d be happy with a win-a-few, lose-a-few meander all the way to May. I dunno, maybe a decent 5 game losing or winning streak will get me going again.

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