The FA Cup is rubbish. Not until you reach the last sixteen does it get exciting. Until then you might as well busy yourself shuffling the free papers that come through the door. We are pish in the FA Cup.
Go back to playing Manchester City in the 1956 final. The Manchester City goalkeeper ‘Old Viking Spirit’ Bert Trautman breaks his goddamned neck in the first half, no substitutes allowed, and we still manage to lose 3-1. The man was on the verge of becoming paralysed and we failed to score more past him than they did against our fully fit keeper.
Against the paupers from West London in the seventies semi final we failed miserably to beat a very average Fulham. The view of the ball dribbling towards the net after a brief game of pinball is still etched in my memory. We also failed to beat Leeds although there was not so much embarrassment in that. Over time we have also suffered at the hands of Altrincham, Kidderminster, Watford, Wrexham and now Torquay.
We are not meant to be any good in the FA Cup. Get used to it. It’s not our thang. Not our bag baby. Let it go. Next season if we draw Tyseley Girls under 12s in the third round assume we are going to lose. It makes the whole experience more palatable.
I say all this like we are brilliant in the other competitions and this one has a kind of hoodoo on us! It’s a pity the Atari 6 a-side only lasted one season and I’m sure the FA will let us forfeit our spot in the third round in order to compete in the Leyland Daf/ Autowindscreen Trophy. We could negotiate a spot in the Anglo-Italian if we win. Oh yeah we’ve played in that one and lost as well. Perhaps we could initiate the Birmingham City Trophy whereby our first team play our Academy under-16s in a one off final. The winners could have a parade down New Street culminating in a civic reception at the Town Hall. They could get a top intellectual celebrity like Jodie Marsh to present the cup. Happy days.
Just remember we weren’t the only Premier team to suffer at the hands of fired up lower league opposition. Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible.
Back in the league, which is far more important, we are away to Charlton. They are similar to us in that no one knows which team will turn up. They just happen to have more points than us.
As they say when you are running away from a lion. You don’t have to run faster than the lion, just quicker than the other guy. This season we have to run just slightly faster than three others. Teams like Charlton are getting sucked into the Benny Hill lion chase. We could do with closing up the gap on the teams above us because Sunderland are almost consumed and we are next on the menu. Charlton and Pompey are our next two games. Two wins would be great.
Keep right on. Only one way to stop a lion, thumbs in the eyes!