Doom and gloom returns to the Riverside
After the hysteria of Saturday’s 5-1 demolition of QPR, it’s was back down to earth with a mighty bump last night. Blackpool’s comfortable 0-3 win has well and truly burst our euphoric bubble.
All the optimism and positivity of the weekend has drained away and it’s back to the drawing board for Gordon Strachan. Our inability to follow the QPR game with at least a positive performance is really bewildering.
Our home record has not been good all season and it’s hard understand exactly why. I put the early-season home form down to the crowd’s simmering hostility towards Gareth Southgate and while that was certainly a factor, it surly doesn’t explain the current home form.
There seems to be tangible sense of gloom and anti-climax about the place these days. After the glory days of the pre-Southgate era, when cup finals and Premier League football became the norm, I suppose the Teesside football public were always going to be deflated and fed up.
After all we had been promised so much by Mr Gibson and expectations had risen accordingly. While I don’t intend to critisise Gibson, as we all enjoyed those years, it seems the weight of expectation can become a burden.
Not a good time then for a new manager to come into the football club. I wonder if Gordon Strachan had any idea of the Riverside mood when he accepted the job? He must be scratching his head about how to address these difficulties.
He said as much in his post-match interview: “It’s not just the players – I need to go back, and the coaching staff need to go back and see how we approached this game. It is becoming a trend, doing well away from home and not so well at home. And I find it surprising because the supporters are absolutely fantastic. They’re very, very patient.”
It is strange that the away following are having a great time, singing and cheering the lads on and watching some cracking football. A way has to be found to somehow bridge the gap and bring some of the away-day atmosphere and fun back to the Riverside.
Of course the mood is only going to improve when the results and performances do and, on a purely footballing front, I’m sure Strachan will be working hard to come up with answers. But how to address the wider feeling of anti-climax and footballing demise on Teesside, is a far harder question to answer.
Do you share Dan’s feeling of anti-climax at the Riverside? How can Boro lift the doom and gloom? Let us know by filling in the feedback form below…