Much has been said and written in recent weeks about the Jekyll and Hyde performances Hull City are putting in at the moment. Those who are not able to travel to away games must be wondering what has been happening when the Tigers are on their travels.
Due to the nearness of York, some of these perplexed souls were able to witness first hand what has been a staple diet for regular away attendees for most of the season. To say that we were second best to a side that is near to the foot of the table and has not won since heaven knows when, is an understatement. Apart from a few flurries in the final quarter of the game, we were quite simply woeful.
The audible disquiet being expressed by the regular Tiger watchers when the formation of the team became apparent on the night proved to be a painfully accurate prediction of what was to come. It is source of much concern that a majority of fans can predict the problems that will ensue from the selection certain players in certain formations. However, the management seem to be somewhere else other than Planet Tiger when team selection and tactics are decided. The conjecture in the crowd that we would be overrun without a recognised tackling force in midfield and that Captain Mohan would be given the runaround by the more spritely, and fleet of foot, York attack proved to be unerringly accurate.
As usual, once that first goal goes in away from home there is no way back and, although in those last 20 minutes we nearly snatched a point, it would have been an injustice had we done so. Once again after the game the fans look for some explanation from the camp that reflects what their eyes have seen and what their brains are telling them.
It must be said that an unwanted characteristic of this campaign has been the stark difference between the views of fans and those of the management about what happened in the game. Too often the fans have been faced with bland platitudes over how unlucky we were or how we matched sides but made silly mistakes. One of the favourites has been how well the other team played and how we should give them credit for stopping us playing.
The fans are told that the management sees all of our players first hand and how they know better than anyone else what players are capable of and who should play. Perhaps it is time that the fans should be told what the nature of these first hand experiences are. What exactly is going on to permit players who perform badly week after week, but still play in the first team? What exactly is causing the non selection of other players? These would have to play worse than they have ever done not to do better than some of those who continue to be selected.
Why persist in playing players out of position when others are natural replacements for those positions? It's not that people want to question the management but, quite frankly, what's going on at the moment seems to run contrary to many of the natural laws of football. Unless someone has invented some new ones that have not been revealed to all, then it just does not make any sense.
None of the fans want to see this poor away run continue and are desperate to see the situation resolved. Most want to see the current management team put this right and do not want to think the unthinkable that the dream team is turning into a nightmare from which you cannot wake.
Ultimate faith remains in the Chairman who will be doing all he can to help sort this out. The faith and backing that he has shown the current management team is admirable and an indication of the sort of person he is. He also says that he is a patient man, which would certainly seem to be true. Nevertheless, no matter how much patience someone has, there must inevitably come a time when this patience runs out.
There has been much talk this week in the Virtual Tiger Community of how our promotion dreams are running very close to being thwarted once again. There is disagreement with how close we are to this and as many have said 'It's not over until the fat lady sings'. Perhaps she is not singing yet, not even warming up in the wings, but it would take a brave man not to recognise that she is definitely in the building and getting her kit on!
On a happier note the Fans' Forum, which the Tigers Co-operative organised with Hull City to discuss the new super stadium, was a great success. After the meeting everyone went home feeling more optimistic than they had 24 hours before.
Tigers Co-operative Ltd., PO Box 145, Brough, HU15 1XP.