Relegation

Some people may question why an Economist-reading, upper-class Tory-wannabe who devotes most of his life to the search of the perfect party (nightclub or political!) would support a working-class football team like Hull City.

Well I was born there.

But I think there is a little bit more than that. Coming from a pretty down-trodden place like Hull, there is a certain element of satisfaction and enjoyment taken from misery, especially when it is your own. Not in a personal way, but in the things around you, and nothing could really project a sense of misery more than supporting Hull City as I was growing up.

2 relegations, 6 men in defence under the most miserable management of Terry Dolan, and many a con-man running the club. I used to enjoy paying £3 to stand with about 4000 other fans playing Lincoln City and Macclesfield on a freezing cold Saturday with the wind off the North Sea blowing through the dilapidated Boothferry Park (or Fer Ark as it was affectionately known due to the amount of letters on the sign whose light bulbs had long expired).

Not only was the football played abjectly shite, with hoofball being the common theme – the managers were so clueless, such as the dismal afore-mentioned Terry Dolan who didn’t even notice a bright orange sticker placed on his bald match during one game with the immortal words “Sack Dolan”.

But yet there was a strange sense of enjoyment.

Somehow Phil Brown got us promoted to the Premiership two years ago, via the play-offs, having started the season looking like it could turn into a relegation battle. And then once in the Premiership, we made it to joint top with a lower goal difference.

Not really satisfactory though. Much better was to subsequently go on a long winless run and survive relegation by the skin of our teeth, only by Newcastle being even worse than we were.

This season was a struggle but we were looking ok, looked like we would survive as we had got through the difficult games. But much better to sack Phil Brown, the manager who saved us from relegation in the Championship, got us promoted, took us to Wembley, kept us up in the Premiership, and replace him with Ian Dowie, the ugliest man in football, so we would find it much harder to stay up.

And much harder we did.

Today’s defeat confirms relegation, unless of course over the last two games, we can overcome a goal difference of 23 in the last two games (bear in mind our combined strike force has scored 9 all season). Or one of the teams above us goes into administration.

Which is good. Next year we will get to play 8 more games, we will probably win more. And play more random long balls and maybe get a few more out of the stadium. We will get to play real teams like Scunthorpe and Doncaster, rather than the pseudo-footballers that the likes of Chelsea and Man City employ. And we won’t have to put up with Arsenal cheating or Wenger moaning.

And we get to show my adopted home town, Reading, what a real football team does.

Bring on the Championship – but lets not win too many games and please please keep Ian Dowie as I much prefer having a shit clueless manager (reminds me of work last year!).

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