Date:Sunday January 12 2014
I haven't lost my mind with my choice of title after today's game against Man City because of the many words I could choose, 'happy' pretty much sums it up as a whole.
With an expected hammering seemingly bearing fruit after eight minutes today with a start that showed too much respect as well as a gift wrapped goal only missing it's wrapping paper, we did well overall.
We started off chasing shadows with some personnel just not looking worthy of the black and white shirt. The likes of Steven Taylor just looking lost.
However, the more this game went on, the more the official's decisions went against us and it instilled a passion or anger into the side to compete on an even level or above.
As the game edged closer to half time and Man City hadn't added to the early goal, my thoughts edged towards it being decent that we could at least attack them in the second half with something to play for.
What happened next brought that feeling forward and we stepped it up massively due to the injustice that the wrongly disallowed Tiote special had enveloped the ground.
I was happy that our thoughts of corrupt officials just gets more proof by the week with yet another 'Sky' club getting the benefit although there was no doubt to add to that.
The feeling of anger made our players seem a couple of yards quicker to the ball with the excellent Tiote being the main instigator. Our midfield was superb in going head to head with their world stars from then on, although with half time approaching, my thoughts turned to a calming effect it would have.
I was wrong because the officials kept up with their shocking performance which in turn led to our players losing their cool but keeping control of the game.
I gave Joe Hart the man of the match performance and that shows how well we did, although he took a fair amount of grief with the many songs about 'head and shoulders' and dandruff.
Even an appearance of a streaker in a luminous green mankini didn't put Hart off. His slip after being chased by the slow stewards, a humourous escape from the stress of the game.
Im not gonna give ratings but instead highlight a few points.
Tiote was excellent and all over the pitch. His goal was a 'worldie' and worthy of any goal of the month award. Nee excuse whatsoever for not giving it, although a change in the rules have to happen as this 'not interfering with play' lark is too easily corruptable.
Steven Taylor started off like he didn't know why he was out there but grew into it a bit, the longer the game went on.
Cabaye was playing in a strange attacking role which saw him as the furthest forward on numerous occasions but he was top class as well.
Anita's passing was shocking at the start but by the time he upped his game, he got subbed.
I would have played Mbiwa alongside Williamson, had Santon on the right and Haidara on the left. Id also have had Cabaye in a slightly deeper role with Ben Arfa alongside Remy. A move which we more or less changed to late on anyway and were dangerous.
Overall though, im happy that we were committed and on another day could have won that. Ths same as against Arsenal and many other teams. We're not far away from a decent side. Maybe two signings.
Im happy that ive got football decisions to grumble over rather than a five or six goal tonking. If Remy's chances had been grabbed. Had Cabaye's effort went in. Had Tiote's counted for real and so on.
Commitment, effort and entertainment is the cusp of our ambition as fans. We got that today and im happy.
Date:Sunday January 12 2014
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