Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Close but no cigar

Bloody hell it's hard being a Welsh football fan. Ever since Joe Jordan made me cry in 1977, 31 years of utter misery has been interspersed with boredom and half a dozen evenings of bliss.
This week's action has been the normal progression from pessimism, pride,fleeting hope and ultimately defeat. Plus ca change. Sometimes I think it's better when we are hopeless.

In a way, last night's under 21 defeat was more difficult to take. We were disadvantaged in so many different ways. Once again, the difference in age showed. The developmentof young players between the ages of 17 and 21 is massive. Wales just ran out of steam against their stronger opponents. But not before the football Gods tempted us with too many hints of success.

Aaron Ramsey is magnificent. But what a shame that Owain Fon Williams was responsible for both goals. He was the one kid who wanted to win the most. He seems like such a nice lad. Maybe too nice for professional football.

just a word of admiration here for Stuart Pearce. He was generous in victory and honest and accurate in his assessment of the game. Fair play Psycho.

And then to Germany. The game panned out like so many others. Wales defend bravely, threaten slightly, it all looks to be going well, and then a sucker punch. Right in the guts.

James Collins had his best game for Wales after a year out. Craig Morgan and Ashley Williams did well too considering they play for Peterborough and Swansea. Gunter and Bale struggled again. Maybe teams have snuffed out that threat now.

I am liking our captain more and more. Craig Bellamy now gives the best interviews on television. He is passionate, to the point and honest. Add an Owain Glyndwr tattoo to those qualities, and you have a great mix. Obviously Alan Shearer didn't think so on BBC 3's coverage. but I'm backing Bellamy every time in that conflict.

The thing is, at the end of the day we lost again. In 2005 the Welsh rugby team started showing great promise, but they too lost the big games. Then something happened. They became a winning team. Last minute kicks started to go over, decisions went their way.

The Welsh football team needs to cross that barrier. We are too pleased with ourselves for losing bravely. Brian Flynn was grinning at the end of last night's match. We need to become winners. Once we do, I'm sure this will be the best decade for Welsh football in our lifetime. But for now it's more pain and misery.

1 comment:

llwynog said...

u21s played really well but I felt that we should have gambled more in the last 10 minutes, unfair to criticize I know but hopefully a few of the lads will be promoted to the seniors for denmark game. give ramsey 45 mins no need to rush and pressure the young man but what a player we have !!!