The Premier league is proving to be a tough nut to crack, it feels like we are floating along, never really cementing a solid place near the top of the table, several reasons, the in-game ‘wobble’ that is enforced upon you is very difficult to come through without dropping substantial points, then there’s the games penchant for throwing up random fuckery matches, you know the ones I mean, the ones where you know from the kick off that you just are not going to win no matter what, I had a 6-2 defeat at Stoke and in the last session a 4-0 battering from Arsenal, both teams I beat previously and both matches where it was evident that my players just weren’t going to be allowed to do anything, whilst the COM received a super-boost, frustrating.
Once again my focus has to be to achieve European qualification for next season, too far off the top two to mount any serious title push now, Champions league qualification would be a success.
Meanwhile, we are excelling in the cup comps, still in the Europa League, Carabao cup and FA Cup.
Valencia are the opponents in the last 16 of the Europa League, will be a very tricky tie, but looking forward to playing at the Mestalla Stadium.
Squad rotation will have to be looked at carefully with so many fixtures piling up, and squad fatigue being a proper thing, I’m often starting matches with fatigued players or a second string of sorts side, which has also added to an injury list and dropping points.
Next focus though is this:
We reached the Carabao cup final after a very nervy and intense 2 legged semi-final against Man City, easily the toughest team to play in the game, their speed, and agility and player individuality means every time they attack my arse clenches, they are almost impossible to stop.
We drew the first leg at the Emirates 2-2, two away goals gave me hope but of course City only needed a 1-0 win back at our place to go through.
They indeed led 1-0, until this:
An acrobatic finish from Emmanuel Dennis in the 24th minute to level it at 3-3 on aggregate, but with us leading on away goals, the following 65 minutes were a very tense affair, I felt physically tired after playing that match but we hung on for dear life to claim a place in our first cup final.
After checking the calendar to see when the final was, I was disappointed to see this:
A game vs Stoke on Sat 1st March, then the Carabao Cup final vs league leaders Wolves the very next day, this has to be a bug, but means I will have to put out an almost youth team against Stoke, risking dropping more points in the league, in order to field a strong fit team for the final.
The board seems happy with the way I’m running the club, this was helped by the signing in the January window of LW Kluivert from Roma for £62.4 million, who subsequently scored on his debut and offers us bags of pace on the wing.
Below is a mini compilation showing Grujic dinking a shoulder to fool the defender and illicit a foul, and a penalty, then previously mentioned Kluivert grabbing a 91st minute leveller, and finally a weird glitchy type occurrence from our GK.