Not a great day for us today: very early in the season to be ‘out of sorts’ but we were and though there were a number of issues there can be no excuses. Having been banished from our home ground by Sandwell’s austerity measures we pitched up to the fairly grim surroundings of St Paul’s Drive, razor-wire and all (think Galatasaray with a Black Country edge) and a large pitch festooned with things various dogs had done with lots of grass. The mutterings from our lads started early and never really went away. We were missing a few, notably Leon, Nathan and Ben but City were missing more, barely recognisible from their strongest side so there was plenty there for us if we wanted it.
I’m not saying we didn’t want it but though we played some neat football at times, City took the momentum down the slope first half and we always seemed a little off colour. Still there was little in it and from our point of view much surrounded a series of penalties and appeals. This was after their number 10, their man of the match, had opened the scoring with a clever run and finish. We had just before had a big shout for a penalty. Just after we got one when Christie was felled but his penalty was well-saved by the always excellent Chattaway: a game changer. Sadly we spent too much time squabbling with one another and despite plenty of endeavour in the second half there only really looked one winner.
Down the slope we created little and conceded a penalty which City scored. Both keepers made excellent saves and we had one goal disallowed but the game petered out. Good luck to City who deserved their win while we must get back to basics!