Royals 0 Whites 2, Whites 1 Lions 0
From darkness into light? Perhaps. The consequences of the last week will become clearer over time but for the moment there is a sliver of hope. The suffocating yoke of relegation induced despond has been temporarily loosened.
A long midweek trip to Royal Berkshire isn’t the daunting experience it used to be but heralded a victory that was as surprising as it was deserved. Our dominance in all facets of the game was underpinned by resilience and another man of the match performance from the hitherto one million pound misfit Luke Murphy.
Unfortunately Millwall continued to torment us. News of their unlikely victory at St Andrews tempered our joy and dragged us back into the mire. Bermondsey’s day out in the Ridings is always an excitable afternoon for our visitors but this time we were all aware of its importance. During the build up both Coach Redfearn and local pundits attempted to under play the occasion by suggesting that the Reading victory had eased the trepidation but I was having none of it. My biliously taut, tension filled stomach said as much.
Typically we made a meal of it and success arrived grudgingly. A first half display deserved much more than the slender advantage and could have been derailed by the sort of laxity that has so often cursed us.
During the aftermath the Lions’ tempestuous manager attempted to deflect attention from his side’s mediocrity by accusing West Yorkshire Police of disrespecting a pitiful offering of South Londoners. It was an ironic and bizarre outburst from a man who whist in charge of Crystal Palace, allowed a coach driver to soil Brighton’s dressing room floor.
The dawn of a new year generally sees a mood of desolation sweep through the masses but not this time. Tactical nous, youthful bounty, the rebirth of yesterday’s men and an astute arrival has combined to bring a little sunshine into the cold foreboding months. The work must go on.