Sometimes, no matter how strong the desire, the body will not respond.
In an understandable slump between the climactic night of passion against Juventus last Thursday, and burgeoning mental preparations for Wednesday’s FA Cup Quarter-Final replay against Spurs, Fulham, trapped within a kind of footballing refractory period, could not perform here.
Only two changes were made (Murphy for Kelly; Smalling for Hangeland) from the preceding Europa League game. Many were surprised that with so many fresh and rested understudies, all eager to impress, that there wasn’t a more substantial re-organisation of the team.
The defeat was no surprise. A draw was almost conjured, but the lacklustre opening half permitted too great a deficit to reverse. The final whistle, then, was met with something of a collective shoulder shrug. Nevertheless, being able to almost nonchalantly write off a home defeat is a remarkable testament to how far the club has come.
That said, the low point for me was that one of their goals happened to be scored by a certain Mr. Tevez. He may possess a mercurial talent, but for one with a sensitive disposition, being exposed to his repulsive sphincter-thrusting routine provided an unnecessarily gruesome distraction.
I’m afraid, that when combined with the cauldron-stirring schtick, and the crazed, leering eyes, it suggests nothing less than a witch from Macbeth on Viagra.