21 February 2009

Predictably Unpredictable

It's good to know that some things never change. The football team that I (nominally, at least) support was nine points clear of the Championship in December and have now only one once in the past games (amazingly, we're still three points clear). Wolves need to blow away ghosts of 2002, sez the BBC Sport website, although it's not really just 2002 but pretty much every other season (OK, not all of them have involved being nine points clear and then almost getting relegated, but they almost always seem to lose momentum part-way through the season and end up in a decidedly mediocre position in the table).

John Bray's article is quite amusing, even if it does hit home a little hard in places (certainly for Maman who has supported Wolves for over 40 years):

Apprehension breeds frustration, and that leads to anger - and that's a familiar scenario for those of us who've followed Wolves for the last 30 years. The nationwide view of Wolves fans is probably a fickle band of moaners. But I don't buy that. We are passionate - but have become accustomed to despair. Betrayal is a strong word, maybe too strong. But even when we ended 19 years of hurt to reach the Premier League in 2003, we were let down by a club not brave enough to spend the money that would have kept us up.

He goes on to add:

There's probably something in the psychological make-up of a Wolves fan that anticipates pain and heartbreak - but in our defence it's happened so often in the past.

Actually, though, supporting Wolves isn't so different from supporting the England football, rugby or cricket teams or watching Henman's attempts to conquer Wimbledon--and the world!--although that mantel, at least, seems to have been handed over to Andy Murray now. It's not that Wolves--or England--are bad; most of the time they do pretty well. Yet, disappointing fans who had so much confidence in the ability of their team is what Wolves--and England--do best. Losing to a better team is one thing; almost getting relegated when you were at one time nine points clear of the division is quite another. Supporting Wolves thus comes naturally to anyone who has followed any major English sport long enough.

As for tomorrow's match against Cardiff, maybe it will finally be time for us to turn our game around. I'm not getting any hopes up just yet though--for a Wolves supporter, getting one's hopes up in February is always a very dangerous game...

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