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Same
It's just the same as previous articles, only about a different game By: Eric Hitchmo 04/10/2012
Exeter City H
02/10/2012   (Click date for match details)
League 2012-2013
L  1- 2
HYDE '81
Attendance: 1483  (337 Away)
More On Exeter City



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I honestly do try and look at the positives sometimes. The Rotherham game the other week was the first game this season that we've actually looked like we deserved to win. By all accounts too, we were resilient in the face of adversity at Fleetwood before an unfortunate mistake cost us a point. We were showing signs that perhaps we were beginning to turn a corner and that we could arrest one of the worst starts to a league season in our professional history. Only twice before have we faled to win a league game before October, and our total of four league goals is the lowest ever in this timeframe. Were we about to change that against Exeter? In the miserable rain, the answer was to be an emphatic no.

Prepare now to once again read what you've read before. There is little positive slant that I can apply to this latest defeat. Not even the most rose-tinted of the 1,146 Barnet fans in attendance could argue otherwise, surely. It is deflating to once again watch a team come to Underhill and not really have to break much sweat to go home with the points. That is, if it could be any more deflating, Once again, the crowd sat mute, unable to raise any positivity to get behind their team. Probably the loudest bit of the night was after Exeter's second goal, where boos rang out amongst much of the home areas. It's a surprise that it's taken this long to be honest, and if things carry on this way, they'll only get louder.

Something needs to wake the club up to realise that this is not going to work. If they cannot see the blatantly obvious and realise that being five points off safety after ten games is by no means a good thing, then we may have to take it upon ourselves. How do we do it without being counter-productive to the team during games? One obvious example is the treatment of Steve Kean at Blackburn, which at times was actually unbelievable. I would suggest that if Underhill turned into a place like that then it would be an even worse experience than it is now. However, this is just getting ridiculous now. This is our fourth year in a row that we will be in a relegation battle. Why should we have to put up with it, especially having been repeatedly promised that it would never happen again?

For me, it is this repeated failure that is killing the club I love. For years that feeling of love has been slowly extracted from me, painfully. I can't imagine that I'm the only person feeling this way. With this in mind, temporarily moving us to Harrow might be the sucker punch that puts us over the edge. There are more than a fair share of voices who do not want this move and will not follow it. Voices of people I know and have seen going to Barnet for years, far longer than I have. I might not know all of you by name, but I certainly know people's faces, and if these faces disappear from Barnet then that for me is what changes the club. We await to see the degree of change, but if I end up next to a load of strangers at The Hive, I think I'd feel a little uncomfortable with that. With the way the football is going, we are giving people another excuse to not follow. They've stopped going to Underhill because the football is so bad, so why would they go to Harrow to watch the same unambitious, going-through-the-motions, pathetic attempt at on-field success?

Back to Tuesday then. Exeter were another team that merely had to turn up and not be awful, rather like York, rather like Gillingham. The latter of whom are now 23 points ahead of us, five points clear at the top with Martin Allen in charge. Anyone got the feeling we may have dropped the ball on that one? The key for the visitors was their front pairing of the clinical Jamie Cureton who put away the two chances he got and the hard work of former Barnet man John O'Flynn, who got a good reception from a large proportion of the home crowd, aside from a small minority who booed, for almost no apparent reason.

Cureton's first goal came from being allowed to much room in the box to pick his spot, just after the half hour mark. It came as Exeter had worked their way into the game after a reasonably positive Barnet start. Once that ten minutes of slight dominance had passed, we never looked like realistically scoring. In the second half it was the same story, and a superb team goal involving O'Flynn and finished by Cureton once again drove another nail into our coffin, as if there weren't enough nails already.

Boos rang out vociferously. We were staring at a two point haul from our opening ten league fixtures. In no way is that acceptable. There was time to almost fluke a way back into the game as a chipped cross from Yiadom looped over the goalkeeper and struck the inside of the post before being cleared. We did however go better with ten minutes remaining as Ricky Holmes, once again our only bright spark, put in a lovely ball for Jake Hyde to head home from point blank range. In a way it was a bit cruel in that it gave the crowd hope that wasn't going to be fulfilled. Indeed, that wad the case, and Exeter held on to their lead with consumate ease.

Boos again at the final whistle and we were left to reflect on what's next. We have already made some rather wholesale changes to a squad which now contains 26 players. Still there appears to be little improvement to what we had. Everyone knows we came into this season drastically short of what was required and it has proved to be so. I can't see where we will be able to change it. The squad simply isn't good enough. Last season we had the hope that at least the squad had some ability despite having been mis-managed. This year, you look around and ask yourself, who's going to get you the goals? Who's going to be the guy pulling the strings in the midfield? Who's going to be the playmaker? These are all unanswered questions, and I feel as if you'll be searching long and hard within the squad before coming up with an answer that goes something along the lines of, "I haven't got a clue".

I still feel sorry for Mark Robson, despite the fact that many, as I predicted, are beginning to turn on him. I still believe that though not entirely blameless, the problem is deeper than this. As a club we are still persisting with the notion that we should be playing real football that's enjoyable to watch. We still haven't realised after seven years of watching League Two football that it doesn't work without significant financial clout, which we of course do not have. This insistence on trying to play the right way will take us back into the Conference, mark my words.

I have at some point said in each of the last couple of years said that we are definitely going down, yet somehow we've pulled something out of the hat each time. I will once again state this, unless something drastic happens. The only thing we have on our side is time. After all, there are still 36 games to play. However, I challenge you to look down the list of games and identify a game that you would look at and say, "yeah, we should win that one". Do it. Find one. Just one.




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All Articles By This Author:

Date 
24/04/2013 Farewell
19/04/2013 Underhill
03/04/2013 Away
02/02/2013 Questions
21/12/2012 Miserable
07/11/2012 Corner
21/10/2012 Win
15/10/2012 Burst
08/10/2012 Glimmer
04/10/2012 Same
12345678910...


Other Articles By Category


Date 
24/04/2013 Farewell
19/04/2013 Underhill
03/04/2013 Away
02/02/2013 Questions
21/12/2012 Miserable
07/11/2012 Corner
21/10/2012 Win
15/10/2012 Burst
08/10/2012 Glimmer
04/10/2012 Same
12345678910...

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