Going to the football offers a degree of solace. To steal an analogy I heard recently, if life is like nailing jelly to a wall, then football is like putting in a box before you do it. It provides just enough structure and certainty to give my brain a rest, but just enough uncertainty and fluidity for it not to be a complete fabrication. I don’t need to escape that much.
I managed to book a meeting in Belfast on Tuesday thereby missing our 5-1 demolition of Plymouth. Even arriving at Belfast airport at 6pm, there was part of me trying to working out whether I could make it to the Kassam, just for a little bit. My flight eventually left at 9.35pm.
Watching the goals online, some of our finishing was breathtaking. When I saw Rob Hall's volley, I let out an involutary yelp of exclamation.
I find Plymouth’s plight quite depressing. Other clubs who have hit troubles are either led there by evil or incompetent owners or were never capable of sustaining the success they craved. I still harbour frustration at Lincoln negligent relegation last year. I don’t know much about The Pilgrim's ownership woes (apart from reports a terrifying Kassam/Ridsdale hook up) but they are a club that should be able to sustain Championship level football. OK, their large travelling contingent is a bit misleading. Many are Devonian migrants who are more likely to attend away games than home. But there's no reason why Devon shouldn't sustain a decent standard football club. Plymouth appear to have innocently followed the dream amidst promises of Premier League riches and more latterly the World Cup. Now they face relegation and, perhaps, complete obliteration.
Presumably there are Plymouth fans like me, who enjoy their club because it offers them a safe haven and home base. Now they’re faced with unstructured chaos.To see Plymouth chasing shadows is particularly depressing.