Some Things Just Aren't Meant To Be

I stood by the fact that even if we won I thought circumstance would rally against us and stop our promotion bid, and though I was wrong on that I truly hadn’t factored Leicester beating us. I had thought a draw extremely likely, and it would and should have been after chasing the game.

There is little point dwelling on the Leicester game. Well all know what happened and if you don’t, well what kind of fan are you? But there were things to look at. The fact the defence became so unbalanced with Harding at right back didn’t help. We rued the loss of Jara and then Halford. The midfield just didn’t bite in the way they have. We had that rarest of things though, a striker scoring, but it’s still too few and far between all season.

But we can be proud of even being in the chase, and having on the last day had a period of time where we had that berth in the playoffs. It was completely and utterly removed for any reality in early February that we’d even be in with a shout. And at the end of the day that top 6 were the top 6 pretty much when we embarked on that run, save for Middlesbrough’s hurtling down the league at an alarming rate. In that regard Bolton not making it either is slightly less galling that our run didn’t see someone else do the same and pip us. We both tried, we both just didn’t have enough. A crazy last dip for the line that was too early.

And so here we are again. Another season of much to mull over, but where very little changes. We remain a Championship club talking about getting to the Premier League and wondering how and why we will make it. That could be another article for another day, but it remains that nagging sense of “where did we go wrong?” It’s simplistic but not overly wrong to suggest everywhere. We started to build our team very late; the squad wasn’t right in its balance. The defence was often shaky, the attackers didn’t score, and the midfield didn’t overly settle. Bear in mind our player of the season is someone who spent 4 months playing out of position at left back. That screams volumes at me.

So after people previously said we needed to clear out and start again, well that approach still didn’t get us over the line. It will be interesting to see what Fawaz and Billy do over this summer. We can’t just go out and sign X player and Y player, because Financial Fair Play dictates we can’t. We are already on the cusp with wages, and we have Derbyshire and Miller coming back with their excessive wage packets.

Something else that also leapt out at me about Saturday was the fact the fans sort of accepted the position. No anger or annoyance we missed out, just a little bit of frustration. We started the day outside the playoffs, we finished there, and yes we would have succeeded had we won, but we truly were beaten by a better side. Hence why so many waiting for the lap of glorious adulation or whatever sheen they put on it not being one of “honour” also clapped off Leicester. They came, they saw, they conquered.

As we’ve said for a while now. There’s always next season.